Dylan Takao and Mariano Ascencio and InterContinental San Francisco Win InterContinental® Hotels and Resorts ‘Ultimate Culinary Clash’ Cooking Competition

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Chef Team Training at City College of San Francisco Wins $5,000 Scholarship from the InterContinental Hotels & Resorts Brand

Chef Dylan Takao and Sous Chef Mariano Ascencio, City College of San Francisco

“We’re so pleased to see how the Ultimate Culinary Clash program has grown in the past six years. Through partnerships with exceptional culinary schools, we’ve been able to put a spotlight on the InterContinental brands’ culinary programs globally." - Gail Gerber

InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts is proud to announce the chef team Dylan Takao and Mariano Ascencio of the InterContinental San Francisco as winners of the sixth annual Ultimate Culinary Clash, which took place on Thursday, May 16, 2019 at the InterContinental Mark Hopkins hotel in San Francisco, CA. Takao worked closely with Executive Chef Daniel Corey behind the hotel’s Luce restaurant and City College of San Francisco colleague and sous chef Mariano Ascencio to execute his dishes for the evening. Part student cooking competition and part scholarship fundraiser, the Ultimate Culinary Clash brought together the winners of five regional Culinary Clash competitions to face-off against each other to see whose dishes reigned supreme. Takao received a $5,000 scholarship from the InterContinental brand and student sous chef Ascencio received an additional $2,500 in scholarship.

The event welcomed more than 200 clients, industry tastemakers, and social media influencers and media for a competitive culinary evening where guests were encouraged to taste and mingle with chef and student teams from InterContinental San Francisco, InterContinental Mark Hopkins, Presidente InterContinental Mexico City, InterContinental San Diego and Hotel Indigo Los Angeles Downtown. Local judges included the evening’s MC, journalist Joel Riddell, journalist Virginia Miller, social media influencer and blogger Emily Martin, Lolinda Executive Chef Juan Torres, Credo Director of Culinary Services Larry Finn, Trinchero Family Estates Senior National Account Manager Camille Costa, Golden Gate Restaurant Association Policy and Education Program Manager Chhavi Sahni, Firefly Executive Sous Chef Symone Bennett, CBS National Travel Writer Randy Yagi, and Boston-based social media influencers Savath and Sovann Yong.

Gail Gerber, Area Director of Sales and Marketing for InterContinental Hotels of San Francisco said: “We’re so pleased to see how the Ultimate Culinary Clash program has grown in the past six years. Through partnerships with exceptional culinary schools we’ve been able to put a spotlight on the InterContinental brands’ culinary programs globally. We’re proud of Dylan and Mariano to win this award for InterContinental San Francisco for the first time.”

Over the course of three months, five InterContinental properties across the United States and Mexico held local competitions with culinary students. The first place winners from each hotel received the opportunity to move forward to the Ultimate Culinary Clash where they presented a small portion of their winning entrée. Event guests, who judged dishes based on taste, creativity, and presentation, were impressed by the team’s Braised Short Rib in Mole Rojo with Collard Greens and Tokyo Turnips.

This year’s student participants and hotels included:

  • InterContinental San Francisco – Dylan Takao and Mariano Ascencio of San Francisco City College
  • InterContinental Mark Hopkins – Luis Lopez and Renee Mata of San Francisco City College
  • Presidente InterContinental Mexico City – Estefania Iris Garcia and Daniela Loyola Zavala of Universidad Anahuac Mexico/Le Cordon Bleu
  • InterContinental San Diego – Riaz Mukadam and Lisa Baza of San Diego Mesa College
  • Hotel Indigo Los Angeles Downtown – Alan Morales of Los Angeles Trade-Tech Community College

This year’s Ultimate Culinary Clash sponsors included Steelite International, kikkoman®, Trinchero Family Estates, Mr. Espresso and RATIONAL.

The Ultimate Culinary Clash serves as an opportunity for the InterContinental brand to showcase its commitment to culinary excellence. The regional competitions – called the Culinary Clash - began eight years ago at the InterContinental San Francisco’s Luce restaurant. To date, the program has raised more than $125,000 in scholarship for students across North America.

About InterContinental Mark Hopkins
Located on the top of prestigious Nob Hill at the intersection of California and Mason Streets, the InterContinental Mark Hopkins, a historic landmark, is a regular stop on the California Street cable car line. Just minutes away from the financial and theatre districts as well as Union Square and Chinatown, this four-star, four-diamond hotel is also home to the Top of the Mark, the world-renowned 19th floor sky lounge that offers panoramic views of the San Francisco Bay Area. For more information and to make reservations, contact the Mark Hopkins, Number One Nob Hill, San Francisco, Calif. 94108, at 415.392.3434 or 800.NOB HILL (662-4455), or by visiting http://www.intercontinentalmarkhopkins.com.

About the InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts brand
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts has 194 hotels located in more than 60 countries with local insight that comes from over 70 years of experience. As a brand, we believe that superior, understated service and outstanding facilities are important, but what makes us truly different is the genuine interest we show in our guests. Our desire is to help guests make the most of their time. We connect our well-traveled guests to what’s special about a destination, by sharing our knowledge, so they enjoy authentic experiences that will enrich their lives and broaden their outlook. For more information about the InterContinental Hotels & Resorts brand, visit http://www.intercontinental.com. Find us on Twitter http://www.twitter.com/InterConHotels, Facebook http://www.facebook.com/intercontinental or Instagram http://www.instagram.com/intercontinental.

About InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts: The InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts brand makes travel alluring, with insights from over 70 years of experience. Each of our properties provides a gateway to the glamour of the InterContinental Life. As a brand, we aim to embody global sophistication through our superior, understated service and exceptional amenities. What makes us truly different is the genuine interest we show our guests through personalised and attentive services. We offer our most valued guests signature VIP services through a dedicated InterContinental® Ambassador programme and an exclusive Club InterContinental® experience. We connect our well-travelled guests to what’s special about a destination, so they enjoy authentic local experiences that will enrich their lives. For more information and to book, visit http://www.intercontinental.com, and connect with us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/intercontinental and Instagram http://www.instagram.com/intercontinental.

About IHG:
IHG® (InterContinental Hotels Group) is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including Regent Hotels & Resorts, InterContinental® Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton® Hotels & Restaurants, Hotel Indigo®, EVEN® Hotels, HUALUXE® Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza® Hotels & Resorts, voco™, Holiday Inn®, Holiday Inn Express®, Holiday Inn Club Vacations®, Holiday Inn Resort®, avid™ hotels, Staybridge Suites® and Candlewood Suites®.

IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns more than 5,600 hotels and approximately 837,000 guest rooms in more than 100 countries, with almost 1,900 hotels in its development pipeline. IHG also manages IHG® Rewards Club, our global loyalty programme, which has more than 100 million enrolled members. In February 2019, IHG acquired Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas, adding 16 hotels (1,347 rooms) to its system and 18 hotels to its development pipeline.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group’s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales. More than 400,000 people work across IHG’s hotels and corporate offices globally.

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Keelin Marcoux
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