2019 Judges & EMCEE!

Thank you to our Judges and Emcee for participating in Pepperfest 2019 food and beverage competition!

2019 EMCEE!

 

Angela Salamanca , Emcee

Angela M. Salamanca was born in Bogotá, Colombia. She moved to the United States at age 17 and earned a degree in Studio Art and Art History. She’s worked in the restaurant industry for over twenty years.

In late 2007, she opened Centro. The restaurant is a canvas expressing Angela’s passion for food, art, music, and culture. Centro has earned a reputation for being one of the best Mexican restaurants in Raleigh. Additionally, it’s become a hub of advocacy for cultural diversity and inclusion.

In 2015 Angela opened Gallo Pelón Mezcaleria, the first mezcal bar in the southeast. Gallo has earned countless regional and national accolades while rising to the top of Raleigh’s craft cocktail scene.

Angela’s journey in this industry parallels her immigrant story. Survival through education and innovation, establishing that sense of home by offering it to others in her spaces. A strong believer in tight community and healthy lifestyle, Angela has used her businesses as a platform to develop and host events benefitting these causes. Eight years ago she partnered with The Boys and Girls Club to launch the annual Day of the Dead 5K which largely funds the arts program at the Brentwood Boys and Girls Club location. To date, this effort has raised over $120K for the club.

Angela practices yoga, enjoys long walks and family time. She has two beautiful daughters and currently lives in downtown Raleigh, NC.

 

2019 Food and Beverage Competition Judges!

 

 

Sheri Castle, Food Writer

Sheri Castle is an award winning profession food writer, cook, recipe developer, cooking teacher, public speaker, storyteller and raconteur.

Find her here

 

 

 

 

Whitney Dane, Chef

Whitney is a visionary and culinary alchemist. A classically trained chef and herbalist, she was raised in the LA farm-to-table movement nurturing celebrities and other industry elite. Eventually returning to her roots in NC,  Whitney co-founded The Honeysuckle Tea House. While raising three boys, including twin toddlers, she continues to rewild our communities’ palates, working with herbalists, farmers, beekeepers, mycologists, foragers and others to elevate our food consciousness.

 

 

Ricky Moore, Chef

Chef Ricky attributes his enthusiasm for food and cooking to his family upbringing but he also credits Fernand Point, the greatest influence on modern French cuisine and Alain Chapel, one of the founders of nouvelle cuisine. Ricky appreciates  a contemporary interpretation of classical, regional and global cooking and foraging familiar flavors that achieve unexpected results.  Honestly made, high-quality food that is traditionally cooked and prepared with creative intelligence. Find him here.

 

 

 

Roy Underhill, Woodwright

Roy Underhill has been the host of the highly regarded PBS series The Woodwright’s Shop. It is among the longest running PBS “how-to” shows. Underhill is the author of several books, including The Woodwright’s Eclectic Workshop and Woodwright’s Shop: A Practical Guide to Traditional Woodcraft. He teaches traditional woodworking in a Pittsboro classroom he calls “The Woodwright’s School”.  Find him here.

 

 

 

Andrea Rice, Food Writer

Andrea Rice is a writer and is the Food Editor at INDY Week. She’s also an expert in wellness and seasonally-based living. Her articles and essays have appeared in INDY Week, The New York Times, Yoga Journal, The Wanderlust Journal, mindbodygreen, and SONIMA, and her first book, The Yoga Almanac, comes out in 2020 from New Harbinger. After 10 years in Brooklyn as a journalist and yoga teacher, she moved to Raleigh with her husband and their cat, where she drinks natural wine and makes a lot of hummus. Her secret weapon? The salty-sweetness of a ruby red Syrian Aleppo chile pepper. Find her here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beairshelle Edme, WNCN-TV 
Food Judge

Beairshelle Edmé joined the CBS North Carolina team in March 2016 and currently anchors weekend mornings and reports weekdays.

 

 

 

 

 

John Huisman, The Triangle Explorer

Food Judge

John Huisman writes about local events, food, and culture on his blog. He grew up at the Jersey Shore but has called Raleigh home for the last nine years. He is an avid runner and fan of coffee shops

 

 

 

Joe Ovies, 919 Beer and 99.9 The Fan
Beer Judge

Joe Ovies is co-host of the afternoon and evening sports talk show on 99.9 FM The Fan ESPN Radio, and a contributor to 919 Beer.

After sampling a few (hundred) local libations, a few of us at 919 Beer decided that it probably wouldn’t hurt to have an online resource for our growing local community. The goal of 919 Beer is all about the BEER.
Building
Engaging
Educating
Resourcing the local craft beer community
We want to help grow our local beer community by engaging, educating, and being a resource for all who want to be a part of it. Wanna join us?

 

Wayne Holt, 919 Beer
Beer Judge

After sampling a few (hundred) local libations, a few of us decided that it probably wouldn’t hurt to have an online resource for our growing local community. The goal of 919 Beer is all about the BEER.
Building
Engaging
Educating
Resourcing the local craft beer community
We want to help grow our local beer community by engaging, educating, and being a resource for all who want to be a part of it. Wanna join us?

 

Adam Eshbaugh, 919 Beer
Beer Judge

After sampling a few (hundred) local libations, a few of us decided that it probably wouldn’t hurt to have an online resource for our growing local community. The goal of 919 Beer is all about the BEER.

Building
Engaging
Educating
Resourcing the local craft beer community
We want to help grow our local beer community by engaging, educating, and being a resource for all who want to be a part of it. Wanna join us?

 

Lynda Loveland, WRAL-TV
Spicy Kid Competition Judge

Lynda Loveland co-hosted the WRAL-FM morning show, and co-anchor WRAL’s morning news on Fox 50. Read more here.

 

 

 

 

 

Max Trujillo, NC F&B Podcast
Spicy Kid Competition Judge

Hospitality industry veteran, Max Trujillo gets behind the scenes of North Carolina’s burgeoning food and beverage culture. He interviews local chefs, sommelier’s, distillers, farmers, brewers on the NC F&B podcast.
Max is an LA sommelier/restauranteur/wine distributor that moved his family to North Carolina in 2013. He was the General Manager for Midtown Grille for the first 3 years he lived in Raleigh.

 

 

Matthew Weiss, NC F&B Podcast
Spicy Kid Competition Judge

Hospitality industry veteran, Matthew Weiss, gets behind the scenes of NC’s burgeoning food and beverage culture. He interviews local chefs, sommelier’s, distillers, farmers & brewers on the NC F&B podcast.
Matthew is a certified sommelier from New York. His experience ranges from restaurant/bar to importing some of the finest wines in the world. He recently moved his family to North Carolina and distributes various fine liquor from Heaven Hill Distilleries.

Leoneda Inge, WUNC’s Race and Southern Culture Reporter
2017 Pepper Festival Awards Presenter

She is the first public radio journalist in the South to hold such a position, which explores modern and historical constructs to tell stories of poverty and wealth, health and food culture, education and racial identity.  Leoneda has been a long standing Pepper Festival Judge over the years.

 

 

Plus!…Laura White of The Indy Weekly as a Spicy Kid Competition Judge.