Alumni Newsletter

Keeping our Alumni informed of Atlantic Cape activities

Former ACA Student Wins Jersey Seafood Challenge

Twelve chefs from across the state gathered at ACCC’s Academy of Culinary Arts Jan. 15 for the chance to be crowned New Jersey’s top seafood chef. After a full day of competition, Chef Peter Fischbach, a former ACA student, was judged winner. He will compete in August at the Great American Seafood Cook-off in New Orleans, which will be televised on the Food Network.

Peter Fischbach

Peter Fischbach receives his award from Department of Agriculture Secretary Charles Kuperus and ACCC President Peter L. Mora.

Fischbach attended the Academy from 1996-97 and is executive chef and food service director for Gourmet Dining Services at the New Jersey Institute of Technology in Newark. He prepared Pan-Seared Local Black Bass and Nona’s Friday Night Fish Feast. After hearing the results, Fischbach, of Elizabeth, said, “I will do my best to showcase all the wonderful seafood and produce that come from New Jersey and hopefully bring home the gold” in New Orleans.

Jahvin Carlough

Jahvin Carlough.

Jahvin Carlough, ’03 ACA and sous chef at JP Prime in Wildwood, finished second. “I was nervous. This was my first competition,” said Carlough of Cape May Court House. He said he over-compensated by bringing extra supplies. “I was very meticulous about what I did. I was stunned when I was announced second place winner.” He prepared Carrot Ginger Mahi-Mahi and Jersey Seafood and Fennel Broth.

Third place went to Vineland resident Michael Inferrera, an ACA student who earned the right to compete in the state competition after winning a student contest in November. He prepared Jersey Cioppino and Black Bass con Prosciutto. Inferrera is a sous chef at Caesars Atlantic City.

Michael Inferrera plates his Jersey Cioppino

Michael Inferrera plates his Jersey Cioppino.

"It's very exciting that the top three finishers in the competition received training at the Academy. It's certainly a testament to both the quality of our students and the education we offer," said Chef Kelly McClay, dean of the ACA.

Each chef had two hours to prepare a “Down the Shore Platter” and a “Signature Dish” focusing on Jersey seafood. The chefs were judged on their work and technique in the kitchen, as well as the presentation and taste of their final dishes.

Among the seven judges were Klaus Muller, retired dean of the Academy; Jennifer Whittle, ’02 ACA, executive sous chef at Manasquan River Golf Club; and Michael Williams, ’92 ACA, executive restaurant chef and culinary recruitment director for Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa. The event was organized by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture.