Vermilion and the James Beard Foundation (JBF) announced an open call for aspiring female culinary leaders to enter the Women in Culinary Leadership Cookoff. As part of the James Beard Foundation Vermilion Women in Culinary Leadership Program launched this fall, the contest will identify driven women chefs and restaurateurs and help them develop their leadership and culinary skills through internship and mentorship opportunities.
Entrants must submit a resume, an essay, and a recipe for one contemporary Indian-Latin dish through Vermilion’s online entry form by Monday, January 14. A selection committee composed of chefs and culinary influencers will determine eight finalists to participate in the cookoff at Vermilion restaurant in New York City in February, where each competitor will execute her recipe for a signature Indian-Latin dish and conduct a brief interview with a panel of judges. “The goal of the cookoff in conjunction with the Women in Culinary Leadership Program is not only to elevate the conversation about leadership roles for women in the food world, but to create real, tangible opportunities that will help ignite change,” said Rohini Dey, the founder of the Indian-Latin restaurants Vermilion in New York City and Chicago, who is spearheading these efforts.
Two winners will participate in a one-year leadership intern program at Vermilion in New York and Chicago, where they will be personally mentored by Dey and experience culinary rotation across all stations to learn about kitchen leadership, front of the house management, and get a crash course in restaurant start-up. Winners will also receive a weekly $500 internship grant from the Women in Culinary Leadership Scholarship and participate in a one-week internship at the James Beard House. They will also have the opportunity to work with one of the Chefs for Women participating celebrity chefs including Aarón Sanchez, Emily Luchetti, Michelle Bernstein, Lorena Garcia, Douglas Rodriguez, Patricio Sandoval, Sue Torres, Carmen Gonzalez, Anthony Lamas, and Susan Weaver. For more information about the program or to apply for the Cookoff, visit