Culinary Competition

Culinary Summit Competition Rules

The University at Buffalo is hosting a Team Competition sanctioned by the ACF on Thursday June 13th 2019 at Crossroads Culinary Center on North Campus. The competition is classified as a Category W, Customized Wildcard Market Basket Competition for 7 teams of 4.

Culinary Competition
  • Each team will be allowed 2 ½ hours of cooking time and a 30 minute plating window (15 minutes for plating and 15 minutes for critique).It is expected that all teams will be dressed in full professional chef’s whites, including hat, apron, and kitchen towels during the competition, especially in consideration of the exposure to the trade and press that may be on-site to cover the competition.
  • All teams will be provided with:
    • 3 x 6-foot foot skirted tables set in a “U” shape
    • 4 x butane burners
    • 4 x large cutting boards
    • 1 x trash container with liner
    • 2 x towels, 1 x sanitizer bucket, 1 x wash bucket and 1 x compost bucket. 
    • Small wares and pans will be available
    • Oven and freezer for desserts only.
  • Each team should bring any specialty equipment needed such as mixers, immersion blenders, knives, plates for plating etc…You will need 4 plates for each course (a total of 16 plates).
  • Each team will be required to prepare a Four-course menu with the choice of appetizer/ soup/ salad/ entrée or dessert of 4 servings each. Of the 4 servings, 3 will be for the judges for tasting and one will be for a photo/critique/press op.
  • There will be a mandatory meeting on Wednesday June 12th at 3:30pm. There will be a lottery for start times. After going over the rules, the teams will be given the market basket containing the selection of ingredients. Each team will then have 1 hour to submit a menu to the competition proctor and set up their speed racks. No substitutions of items in the basket may be made and all items must be used.


Four ACF-approved judges will judge the competitors, using a 100-point scale, as follows:

    Floor Score: Total of 40 points
  • Sanitation/ Food Handling
  • Mise en Place/ Organization
  • Culinary and Cooking Techniques and Proper Execution
  • Proper Utilization of Ingredients
  • Timing/ Work Flow (1 point deduction for each minute late) 
    Tasting Score: Total of 60 points
  • Serving Methods and Presentation
  • Portion Size and Nutritional Balance
  • Creativity, Menu and Ingredient Compatibility
  • Flavor, Taste, Texture and Doneness

Contestants may lose points or be disqualified from the challenge for lack of compliance with contest rules.

    Noncompliance may include, but is not limited to:
  • Lack of mise en place, or disorganization
  • Deviation from the menu or lack of cooking integrity
  • Inappropriate or unsafe food handling practices
  • Improper portion size
  • Violation of the uniform code
  • Inappropriate conduct or unethical behavior
  • Tardiness

Judges will offer individual critiques to contestants at the close of the competition.
The decisions of the judges are final.


ACF medals will be awarded, based on the following point totals:

  • ACF Gold medal (90-99 points)
  • ACF Silver medal (80-89 points)
  • ACF Bronze medal (70-79 points) 

All contestants will receive certificates of participation.