I am a big fan of the reality/competition on Bravo called Top Chef. This summer, in between regular seasons, they aired a new kind of competition: Top Chef Masters.
Instead of selecting a number of up and coming new chefs to win the prize and get jump started into fame, Bravo selected established and very famous chefs to compete against each other for a top prize of $100,000 to go to the charity of their choice. This week the final episode aired and the winner of this windfall was revealed to be Rick Bayless, owner of Frontera Grill in Chicago, founder of the Frontera Farmer Foundation and renowned diplomat for Mexican cuisine.
I started watching Rick’s television program last year on PBS and was impressed by his recipes as well as his intimate familiarity with Mexico and the variety of cuisine in the large country. My curiosity about him was piqued again when I received a catalog from Seeds of Change and saw that a page was dedicated to his work with the local farmers in the Chicago area. So it was with much enthusiasm that I watched his rise to the top four on the Bravo program.
In addition to being brain candy entertainment, the participation of Rick Bayless on the cable network show highlighted the efforts being made around the country to support and encourage sustainable farming. By spotlighting his charity Bravo brought awareness of the sustainable farming movement to a much more broad audience. I was thrilled when he won the $100,000 prize and when he accepted the large donation he spoke about how the money will assist farmers supplying the Chicago area with purchasing the necessary equipment in order to create a sustainable agricultural farm.
So congratulations Rick and congratulations to all the farmers who will be benefited by the win!
For information on donating you can contact the foundation:
Frontera Farmer Foundation
445 North Clark Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610
This blog post is my weekly contribution to Fight Back Fridays, hosted by Food Renegade.