The Bermuda Hospitality Institute’s 2nd Annual Rising Chef of the Year competition occurs during the last two weeks of October, with the finals held on November

This sell-out event takes place over five nights: four nights of semifinals with chefs from Bermuda’s most noted restaurants competing for a place in the finals. Each night features a Mystery Basket that contains a different protein and a local, seasonal ingredient, and a different top chef kicks off each evening with an original appetizer. Generous tasting portions of each dish made, accompanied by wine and ending with dessert, make it a wonderful night of fun and food for a great cause.

Last year’s winner, chef Carmen Viola from Fairmont Southampton’s Newport Pub, was one of only two women to compete, and she was the only female in the final field of four. Her winning recipe? Trilogy of Flank Steak, featuring flank steak smoked with shitake mushrooms and caramelized cranberries; flank steak stuffed with squash puree; and flank steak rolled with a tomato ragout. The semifinal nights of lamb, seafood, pork and Wadson Farms free-range organic chicken featured dishes including jalapeno lamb lollipops with herb and goat cheese crust and sweet potato ratatouille, and pork ballotine with pineapple and grilled bell pepper stuffing.

Hosted by International Imports on Bermudiana Road in Hamilton and sponsored by Butterfield & Vallis, Gosling Brothers and Lindo’s Family Foods, the 38 seats available each night sell out well in advance (semifinals $95 each, finals $150). For further information, contact BHI at 295-5049 or