JWU culinary stars Danielle Serret and Ariel Pallares
JWU culinary stars Danielle Serret and Ariel Pallares
Miami New Times

Iron Fork 2018: JWU Students to Compete for Michael Shikany Memorial Scholarship

New Times' Iron Fork is set to take over the Hyatt Regency Miami Thursday, October 4, with an evening of delicious food from favorite local restaurants, as well as two exciting culinary showdowns.

Ben Goldman of Planta South Beach will take on Jorge Ramos of Barley: an American Brasserie in a head-to-head battle. The competition, hosted by celebrity chef Ralph Pagano (Naked Taco), will include a two-round cooking competition for the Iron Fork Skillet of Excellence and bragging rights.

For the second year, two student chefs from Johnson & Wales University will compete in the Student Showdown for the Michael Shikany Knife of Excellence, an award and scholarship in memory of one of Miami's most innovative chefs.

Danielle Serret and Ariel "Chico" Pallares will face each other in a cooking competition hosted by WSVN's Belkys Nerey. Both students won a contest at their school's campus last week in order to compete on the Iron Fork main stage.

JWU North Miami's dean of culinary education, Bruce Ozga, says winning the scholarship could be the deciding factor in one of these young students' life choices. "The generous donation of the scholarship fund will make a significant impact. For some of the students, it might mean the difference between them having to put their studies on hold and graduation. It's a huge impact."

A GoFundMe page has been set up to raise funds for the scholarship, with nearly $6,000 donated toward a $10,000 goal. Donations can be made at gofundme.com/michael-shikany-knife-of-excellence.

In addition to viewing the live competitions, Iron Fork attendees can feast on offerings from restaurants such as Amore de Miami, Toro Toro, Taula Fresh Mediterranean Grill, Boss Burger N Brew, Mason, Finka Table & Tap, Amelia’s 1931, Hard Rock Cafe, Edukos Tavern Miami, Philly Grub, Zubi Fish House, Mr. Chow, Los Ranchos, Los Tanitos, Pink Pie, El Rey de las Fritas, Bagatelle Miami, Killer Melts, I Heart Mac & Cheese, and RA Sushi.

The event will take place from 7 to 10 p.m. for general-admission ticketholders and include unlimited bites, tasty libations, and live entertainment.

VIP ticketholders gain entry to the event one hour early, at 6 p.m., and access to a private VIP bar and lounge with complimentary Estrella Damm beer, Voga Italia wine, and Banyan Reserve vodka.

Right now, guests can take advantage of special Foodie Four-Packs of tickets. A four-pack of general-admission tickets costs $100 ($25 per person), and a four-pack of VIP tickets is $240 ($60 each). Individually, tickets cost $40 for general admission and $80 for VIP in advance and $50 and $90, respectively, at the door.

New Times is a partner with Miami Rescue Mission, which serves more than 1,300 men, women, and children daily at its Miami-Dade and Broward centers. During Iron Fork, guests can participate in a special raffle where 100 percent of the proceeds will go toward the cause.

To purchase tickets, visit newtimesironfork.com.

New Times' Iron Fork. 6 to 10 p.m. Thursday, October 4, at James L. Knight Center and Hyatt Regency Miami, 400 SE Second Ave., Miami. Tickets cost $40 to $90 via newtimesironfork.com.

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