Though Sur Lie chef Emil Rivera's dessert won the final round of last night's Chopped Challenge, the judges (Joe Ricchio of Maine Magazine, chef Rob Evans of Duckfat, Susan Axelrod of MaineToday, and Chris Papagni of CP Consulting) called the event in favor of Earth at Hidden Pond's Justin Walker for overall performance. Chefs Adam Flood of Grace and David Levi of Vinland went down in the first two rounds.
According to Nutrition and Education Manager Courtney Kennedy, the event raised just shy of $15,000 for Cooking Matters Maine, a subsidiary of Good Shepherd Food Bank which provides access to cooking classes for low-income families. This is the third year of the challenge, hosted annually at Grace. Restaurant owner Anne Rutherford praised the charity and the event. "I do Chopped to show my children that being part of their community comes with an obligation to do their part and to be grateful for their access to the tools to do so," she explained. "This is a cause that is so basic and understandable that it is impossible to say no to."