Local chef wins at So-Cal Chef Open

By Donna Ritchie, Editor, The Friday Flyer

Wayne Quintos, pictured second from right, poses with his Urban Catering Co. crew at the So-Cal Chef Open.

For a second year in a row, Wayne Quintos, Canyon Lake resident and head chef at The Sports Stop, won 2nd place in the People's Choice category at the annual So-Cal Chef Open.

Wayne competed along with 14 other chefs from some of the top restaurants in Southern California. The event is to help raise money for the athletic programs at the Oak Grove Center in Murrieta, a non-profit public school and treatment facility for at-risk and special needs youth.

The 9th annual So-Cal Chef Open was held in the Grand Ballroom at the Pechanga Resort and Casino on Monday, October 24. The winners of the People's Choice award is decided by those in attendance at the event. According to Wayne, over 600 people attended this year's event. "We are very proud to represent Canyon Lake."

Wayne's winning entry, Notorious P.I.G., is an updated version of Sisig. Sisig is a native Filipino dish consisting of various pig parts, such as the ears, snout and jowls. The dish is served on a sizzling platter and topped with raw egg. The ingredients in Wayne's modernized version were pork belly confit, barbequed pork loin, beef marrow aioli, calamansi citronette, charred leeks and cured egg yolk.

Last year, Wayne won 3rd place in the Top Chef category and 2nd place in the People's Choice category. In 2005, Wayne was given the Rising Star Chef award by the Southern California Restaurant Writers Association and, in 2004, Wayne was awarded a gold medal for culinary excellence by the American Tasting Institute.

Earlier this year, Mayor Tim Brown recognized Wayne's achievements by presenting him with a proclamation on behalf of the City of Canyon Lake.

Wayne has been a professional chef for the past 17 years. He's worked under many great chefs in premier hotels around Southern California, and has appeared on several culinary televisions shows, including "Let's Dine Out." A few yeas ago he started his own catering company, The Urban Catering Co., specializing in contemporary Asian, regional American and Pacific Rim Cuisines. He's also proficient in European, Latin and Mediterranean cuisines. The Urban caters to private and corporate parties, weddings and backyard barbecues. To contact Wayne, call 909-261-7420.