Miami Chefs: #TNTShowdown Chef Profiles and Winners Circle

From Upper right: Chef Niven Patel, Chef Steve Santana, Chef Jeremiah Bullfrog, Chef Richard Hales, In Center: Brett Chiavari, Chef Bee, Chef Alex Chang, From Bottom Left:Chef Giorgio Rapicavoli, Chef Brad Kilgore, Chef Todd Erickson, Chef Aaron Brooks.

From Upper right: Chef Niven Patel, Chef Steve Santana, Chef Jeremiah Bullfrog, Chef Richard Hales, In Center: Brett Chiavari, Chef Bee, Chef Alex Chang, From Bottom Left:Chef Giorgio Rapicavoli, Chef Brad Kilgore, Chef Todd Erickson, Chef Aaron Brooks.

On Sunday 11/8, The Liquid Projects and MIAbites presented the SOLD OUT Taco & Tequila Showdown #TNTShowdown at The Vagabond Restaurant and Bar to benefit non-profit, Urban Oasis Project.  

Some of Miami's most creative and innovative chefs came together along with their bartenders, and created "signature" tacos and tequila and mezcal cocktails. 

Our esteemed Judges; Evan Benn, Gabe Orta,  and Nidal Barak selected Best in Show, while attendees were given two TNT tokens to vote for People's Choice!

The Winners Circle:  The Judges choice for Best Taco went to Chef Aaron Brooks and Chef Jose Gamez of EDGE Steak and Bar for their kangaroo ( yes...kangaroo! ) taco, and Best Tequila cocktail went to Dustin Dinter of Taquiza for his pineapple cactus juice Fidencio mezcal cocktail.  Peoples Choice for Best Taco went to Chef Bee of Oishi Thai for his spicy salmon and truffle oil taco, and Best Tequila cocktail to Ricky Rodriguez for his watermelon Maestro Doble tequila cocktail. 

The 12 chefs represent a new and exciting direction for Miami...creative ingredients, innovative dishes, beautiful presentation, and all with delicious results.  This new community of chefs are not afraid the take chances and test the food boundaries for Miami locals and visitors alike. They like using local ingredients from the farms in Homestead, locally caught fish, and organic and grass fed meats and poultry from local South Florida purveyors. 

We have featured each of them individually on MIAbites over the past month, each one interviewed by one of our MIAbites contributors, but in recap of Sunday's event we thought we would once again highlight this talented group of participating chefs with links to each of their profiles and our Q&A. 

So get to know our chefs...as they are really YOUR chefs; the new breed of Miami chefs. 

And make sure you visit their amazing restaurants and tell them MIAbites sent you! 

Piyarat Potha Arreeratn aka Chef Bee- Oishi Thai and soon to open Naiyara interviewed by @Ergagit

 http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/9/19/chef-bee-tntshowdown-chef-profile#.VjwRsmTF868=

Chef Aaron Brooks-  EDGE Steak & Bar at The Four Seasons interviewed by Marian Bacol-Uba @MarianLuxRealty

  http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/15/chef-aaron-brooks-tnt-showdown-chef-profile?rq=aaron%20brooks#.VjwSgWTF868=

Chef Jeremiah Bullfrog- GastroPod as interviewed by Allison Riley @YallTasteThis

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/14/chef-jeremiah-of-gastropod-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=chef%20jeremiah#.VjwSy2TF868=

Chef Alex Chang- The Vagabond Restaurant & Bar  as interviewed by @MandyBaca 

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/30/chef-alex-chang-of-the-vagabond-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=chef%20alex%20chang#.VjwTjmTF868=

Chef Todd Erickson- Huahuas Taqueria and HaVen interviewed by Ellen Bowen

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/9/28/chef-todd-erickson-tnt-showdown-tacos-tequila?rq=todd%20erickson#.VjwVyWTF868=

Chef Richard Hales- Sakaya Kitchen, Blackbrick and Centro Taco Popup as interviewed by Melissa Ginsberg @TheFoodieTeacher

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/13/tntshowdown-chef-profile-chef-richard-hales-of-centro-taco?rq=richard%20hales#.VjwV-mTF868=

Chef Bradley Kilgore- Alter interviewed by Marian Bacol-Uba @MarianLuxRealty

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/16/chef-bradley-kilgore-of-alter-tnt-chef-profile?rq=bradley%20kilgore#.VjwWMmTF868=

Chef Niven Patel- Michaels Genuine Food & Drink by Jennifer Massolo @TheLiquidProjects

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/30/chef-niven-patel-of-michaels-genuine-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=Niven%20Patel#.VjwWvGTF868=

Chef Giorgio Rapacavoli- Eating House interviewed by @Ergagit

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/23/chef-giorgio-rapacavoli-of-eating-house-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=giorgio#.VjwW62TF868= 

Chef Steve Santana- Taquiza interviewed by Paula Echevarria @Pechez

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/20/chef-steve-santana-of-taquiza-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=steve%20santana#.VjwXK2TF868=

Brett Chiavari- BC Taco Truck interviewed by @Ergagit

http://www.miabites.com/home/2015/10/31/brett-chiavari-of-bc-taco-truck-tntshowdown-chef-profile?rq=Brett#.VjwXZGTF868=

We hope that those of you that attended last night enjoyed the TNTShowdown and if you missed out, please make sure you sign up for MIAbites Newsletter so you can stay up on local Miami food news and be in the know for our next Showdown!