It is with great pride we now announce that Chef Ben Diaz of CBD Cuisine has taken on the official role of Turbo Pot Culinary Ambassador! Multiple award-winning Chef Ben Diaz is a leading talent in the culinary world. Like us, Chef Ben shares a passion for "clean eating", modernism and experimental and envelope-pushing dining experiences. Always keeping abreast of trends and the latest and greatest in the food realm, Ben is the creative genius behind some of the best eats in Los Angeles.
Chef Diaz is a graduate of the prestigious California School of Culinary Arts and a coveted freelance chef and consultant who loves to push the boundaries of cuisine and create beautifully stunning works of art. He has been inducted into the Les Amis d’Escoffier Society, Cambridge Who’s Who of Culinary Professionals, and World Master Chefs Society.
Ben is an accomplished entrepreneur and rising star on the national culinary stage. Chef Ben has appeared on major television networks, such as the Food Network’s Chef Wanted and Cutthroat Kitchen. He recently won the Cooking Channel’s Farmers Market Flip and was voted fan favorite in Culinary Fight Club’s “Blended Burger Battle.”
Chef Ben holds six certifications, including Certified Hospitality Department Trainer and Certified Food and Beverage Executive, and he regularly works alongside the world’s top chefs as a member of the ACF Chefs de Cuisine Association of Los Angeles. Here, Ben is serving a second term as the chapter’s apprenticeship chair. Just this past November, Ben won the nationwide ACF Recipe of the Month competition with an inspired and exceptionally creative jackfruit dish (image below).
To give you a taste of his creative genius, this particular recipe featured hominy crusted black bass in brown butter, sweet jackfruit harissa, mezcal syrup, poached micro carrot, carrot & chile de arbol salsa, and tajin crusted marinated scallop with avocado crème Fraiche. Wow!
ACF Recipe of the Month winning dish (November 2017)
Chef Ben has served as the visionary leader in some of the finest restaurants in Los Angeles: including The Silver Trumpet Restaurant, JW Marriott, and Stockdale Country Club, bringing with him an essential focus on fresh, seasonal and locally grown produce and a reputation for highly innovative and creative dishes. He most recently served as executive chef at Toca Madera (West Hollywood, Los Angeles, CA), where his talent and dedication were quickly rewarded when—in winter 2017— it was voted one of the top Mexican restaurants in the Los Angeles area.
In January 2018, Ben took on the prestigious role of executive chef at Luxe City Center Hotel, Los Angeles. He is also the Director of Epices de la Vie Gourmet Salts & Spice Co. and the Director of Culinary Innovation at CBD Cuisine Consulting Services & Catering Division, which offers comprehensive consulting services from concept and sourcing, through menu-development services and staffing.
Chef Ben is currently working on several new projects; one being the opening of his first brick and mortar restaurant slated for late 2018 and a second cookbook focusing on small plates. You can be sure to expect uniquely eye-catching dishes and bold flavor combinations to come out of any kitchen he’s working in. Welcome to the Team, Chef Ben!
At just 25 years old, Shayne has already made a big splash in the culinary world and earned some major accolades. Hailing from St. Louis Missouri, Shayne currently serves as President of the American Culinary Federation’s Young Chefs Club (ACFYCC) and also works professionally as the lead line chef at the prestigious Gatesworth. How does he find the time!
Shayne’s professionalism, dedication, and talent are truly unmatched among his peers, but it is his humility that is particularly striking for any chef, especially one of such a young age and with such accomplishments. In addition to serving as president of an ACF chapter and going on to global chef competitions, Shayne has been recognized as the 2016 ACF Regional Student Chef of the Year as well as the 2017 WAC Youth Chef of the Americas.
We had the pleasure of meeting Shayne McCrady almost a year ago, exactly, while preparing for Worldchefs Continental Tryouts for the Americas Competition in July at Florida Technical College in Kissimmee, Florida.
Shayne took the opportunity to utilize Turbo Pot cookware in his arsenal and ultimately secured a major win in the Hans Bueschkens Young Chefs Challenge, which would propel him as a finalist to the Global Young Chefs Challenge 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Although the Global Young Chefs Challenge is going to be featuring an all-electric cookware line, Chef McCrady will be bringing a new secret weapon to aid him in his journey: he will be taking two unreleased Turbo Blades with him to battle on July 12, in Kuala Lumpur.
We are proud to have Shayne McCrady representing the United States in such a prestigious event. We know he possesses the acumen, skills, and cool confidence to be a top performer in this competition and we will be cheering for him to bring home the gold.
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