Chef Kyle Richardson, of New Lenox, and the Joliet Junior College culinary team won the national championship last week in Dallas against three other schools in the American Culinary Federation.
JJC placed second overall last year, but had the recipe for success with its meal this year. Earlier this summer, I had a chance to hang out with the team as it prepared a practice dinner, and I was fortunate enough to sample the meal that night.
The five-member team includes David Basile, of Peotone; Robert Belanski, of Plainfield; Aaron Guajardo III, of Joliet; Laura Korte, of New Lenox; and Michael Shannon, of Plainfield.
Guajardo also won the award for national student chef of the year.