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Celebrating Culinary Excellence: Sean McEvoy

We are excited to announce our very own chef, Sean McEvoy won the prestigious 2024 Harvest Table (ACE) Competition!  

Chef Sean traveled to Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem North Carolina on March 14th to compete against 13 other chefs nationwide. The nation. They competed in an ACF Category K – Contemporary Hot Foods event in a 1.5-hour quickfire competition, to test chefs’ on their quick thinking in the kitchen. Each chef was given a mystery box of ingredients to prep, prepare, and plate as their main course entree. The basket featured the Striped Bass donated by our partner, Cheney Brothers. 

The ACE Competition is a culinary competition that celebrates and spotlights ARA’s culinary talent. Utilizing American Culinary Federation (ACF) standards ignites the dedication to providing growth and development while continuing to build a global culinary culture for the chefs. The ACE competition is a hallmark of ARA’s commitment to fueling the hospitality experience and ongoing food focus. There are eight regional competitions in Collegiate Hospitality happening right now around the country, and by the 2nd week of April, they will all be complete. Chef Sean will be joining the other seven competitors heading onto the next round at the Culinary Institute of America in San Antonio Texas on June 27th. 

Chef Sean is celebrating his first year with the ARA Team, although his culinary journey started by accident. He grew up in a gravy-less home, where he found himself washing dishes as a favor to his brother who was managing a bar in college. One day, when the grill cook did not show up, the Chef looked at Sean and handed him a spatula. The fast-paced Creole kitchen inspired creativity for creating new dishes and quickly led to his passion for made-from-scratch cooking and modernizing new dishes.  

After completing a 6,000-hour American Culinary Federation Chef Apprenticeship Program from Johnson County Community College, Chef Sean McEvoy became a Certified Culinarian. From there, he studied baking and pastry at The Art Institute of Vancouver. After finishing school, he began his culinary journey; from shucking oysters at the Wellfleet Beachcomber, to pastry production for Dean & Deluca, an American chain of upscale grocery stores. Chef Sean has worked at the Academy Awards and various movie premiers alongside the esteemed Wolfgang Puck. Chef Sean also helped celebrity chef Curtis Stone bring his restaurant Gwen to the desert of Coachella, cooked for two former presidents and has done galas across Los Angeles and the Greater Boston Area.  


If you see Chef Sean around campus, make sure to congratulate him and wish him good luck as he moves on to the next round on June 27th at the Culinary Institute of America campus in San Antonio, Texas.