• Title

  • Chef Brendan Vesey of Botanica wins Steel Chef Challenge

    MANCHESTER - More than 700 guests in the Armory Ballroom welcomed Food Network’s Iron Chef Michael Symon and cheered on four N.H. chefs in the New Hampshire Food Bank’s Steel Chef Challenge on March 9. The annual fundraiser pits four N.H. chefs competing for Steel Chef honors by creating a dish made with four secret ingredients that challenge even the most adventurous chefs. 

    And the winner is:  Chef Brendan Vesey of Botanica, Portsmouth. Vesey created a dish that the judges described as “Super elegant” “Work of art” and “I want a gallon of this broth!” 

    Vesey took the four secret ingredients: Carp, local mushrooms, vinegar and dried mustard, and created a Spring Bowl highlighting the ingredients, especially impressing the judges with the beauty of the dish and the flavorful broth.

    “I was honored to be invited to compete on behalf of the New Hampshire Food Bank” said Vesey. “To do this event, to cook here for the crowd and for these judges, all to help raise funds to support the New Hampshire Food Bank and people with food insecurities in our region – this is really important and impactful. Whatever I can do to help the cause, I will do it.” Vesey lives in Portsmouth with his family and is chef/owner of the new Botanica Restaurant.

    About the New Hampshire Food Bank:
    The New Hampshire Food Bank, a program of Catholic Charities New Hampshire, serves as the only food bank in the state, working to provide nutritious food and resources to the hundreds of thousands of New Hampshire residents that are food insecure. The Food Bank supplies millions of pounds of food annually to more than 425 partner agencies, including food pantries, homeless shelters, soup kitchens, children’s programs, senior centers and more. In turn, these agencies provide hunger relief to those suffering from food insecurity throughout the state.

    Steel Chef Challenge 2020:
    Competing Chefs:
    Chef Brendan Vesey, Botanica Restaurant/STEEL CHEF WINNER

    Chef Matthew Berry, Greenleaf
    Chef Dan St. Jean, Common Man Family of Restaurants
    Chef Jon Talbot, Brookstone Events and Golf
    Chef Lee Frank, Otis Restaurant
    Chef Michael Buckley, Michael Timothy’s Dining Group
    Erin Fehlau, WMUR news anchor and host of Chronicle

    Special Guest Host:
    Chef Michael Symon, Iron Chef America