The Embassy of the Philippines Wins the 2018 Events DC Embassy Chef Challenge Presented by TCMA

Tenth Annual Competition Offers a Culinary Tour of the World

Washington, D.C. (May 18, 2018)—Attendees of the Tenth Anniversary Events DC Embassy Chef Challenge presented by TCMA gathered to travel the world with their taste buds, sampling bites and beverages from 28 participating nations. Embassy chefs showcased the unique flavors of their home countries in a culinary showdown. Chefs competed to win the coveted People’s Choice Award presented by Events DC, chosen by guests’ votes, as well as the Judges’ Choice presented by TCMA, selected by a panel of influential members of the diplomatic, cultural and culinary communities.

Chef Abigail “Abie” Sincioco-Mateo representing the Embassy of the Philippines was selected as the People’s Choice Champion and well as the Judges’ Choice Champion for her plate of Pork Sisig. Both second-place prizes were given to the Embassy of Ghana Chef, Francis Otoo, for his Lamb Jollof Rice. Chef Jouvens Jean from the Embassy of the Republic of Haiti took home the third-place prize in the Judges’ Choice category for his Kabrit Kreyol served with Haitian Cinnamon Water.

In the People’s Choice category, third-place was awarded to the Embassy of Colombia Chef, Alex Salgado, for his Coconut Shrimp with Pancetta and Heart of Palm Ceviche.

The judging panel consisted of:
--Andy Shallal, Busboys & Poets
--Major Garrett & Arden Farhi, CBS News
--Lauren Bernstein, The Culinary Diplomacy Project
--Chef Tim Ma, Kyirisan
--Nycci Nellis, The List Are You On It
--Executive Chef Xavier Deshayes, Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center
--Daniel Nasaw, The Wall Street Journal
--Maura Judkis, The Washington Post
--Chef Cynthia Verna, 2017 People’s Choice Champion representing the Embassy of the Republic of Haiti
--Chef Moja Fedal, 2017 Judge’s Choice Champion representing the Embassy of Morocco

Two new awards were handed out this year as well. The Best Beverage presented by Pepsi was awarded to the Embassy of Barbados for their Drunken Bajan Lemonade developed by mixologist Philip Antoine and Chef Creig Greenidge. The Best Dressed Embassy presented by Macy’s was earned by the Embassy of the Kingdom of Morocco with a colorful display that wowed guests.

Guests ate their way through an abundant array of foods and drinks prepared by the embassy chefs representing Bangladesh, Barbados, Belgium, Plurinational State of Bolivia, Republic of Cameroon, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Côte d’Ivoire, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Republic of Haiti, Republic of Iraq, Jamaica, Republic of Kenya, Kyrgyz Republic, Principality of Liechtenstein, Mauritius, Republic of Moldova, Kingdom of Morocco, Nepal, Panama, Peru, the Philippines and Slovak Republic.

Events DC senior vice president and managing director of sports, entertainment and special events, Erik Moses, said of the tenth anniversary event, “This year’s challenge was bigger and better than ever before. It was great to see so many embassies turn out with such pride for their native cuisine and culture. Congratulations to all the chefs who competed. Here’s to another decade of friendly and delicious competition.”

Media ready photos of the event are available here, courtesy of Events DC

For more information, or to speak with this year’s chef champions, contact Chala Jones (Events DC) 202-608-1134.

The 2018 Event DC Embassy Chef Challenge presented by TCMA sponsors include Astral Tequila, Bundaberg, Cultural Tourism DC, Cutco, Legacy Partners Distribution, Macy’s, RCN Business, Social Driver, Sombra Mezcal tequila, Teahouse/Pureleaf, TYKU Sake and Voss artesian water.

Events DC, the official convention and sports authority for the District of Columbia, delivers premier event services and flexible venues across the nation’s capital. Leveraging the power of a world-class destination and creating amazing attendee experiences, Events DC generates economic and community benefits through the attraction and promotion of business, athletic, entertainment and cultural activities. Events DC oversees the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, an anchor of the District’s hospitality and tourism economy that generates over $400 million annually in total economic impact, and the historic Carnegie Library at Mt. Vernon Square. Events DC manages the Stadium-Armory campus, which includes Robert F. Kennedy Memorial Stadium and surrounding Festival Grounds, the non-military functions of the DC Armory and Maloof Skate Park at RFK Stadium. Events DC also built and now serves as landlord for Nationals Park, the first LEED-certified major professional sports stadium in the United States. The most recent addition is Gateway DC, an innovative and versatile space featuring a covered and open-air pavilion in the center of a 1-acre park, conveniently located in the Congress Heights neighborhood of Washington, DC. For more information, please visit and find us on social media – Facebook (Events DC), Twitter (@TheEventsDC and @TheEventsDC_SED for the Sports Entertainment and Special Events Division), and Instagram (@EventsDC).

Cultural Tourism DC is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that develops and delivers authentic, memorable experiences for people to enjoy and learn about Washington, DC, beyond its monuments. Residents and visitors in the District of Columbia can see its neighborhoods by walking along 17 Neighborhood Heritage Trails and participating in WalkingTown DC, a 10-day festival of intriguing guided tours of DC sites; gain insight into our international diplomatic community via Passport DC and the Around the World Embassy Tour; and engage in arts and culture during PorchFest DC, a showcase for local performing artists in neighborhood settings. Affiliate member organizations provide authentic cultural experiences using the extraordinary talents of local and visiting artists from across the globe, many of whom are the guests of their embassies, another unique DC resource.

About TCMA (A Drew Company)
TCMA is the exclusive manager of Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center (RRB/ITC). TCMA’s team excels in delivering unparalleled service and expertise in Real-Estate Development, Leasing, Building Operations, Hospitality Services, and International Trade Promotion. For more information, please visit