Chef Asbel Reyes of SideBern’s restaurant in Tampa, Florida, showed off his best blending skills during The 2011 Vitamix Challenge, battling it out against top chefs from across the country in a blend off.

The competition was held on Oct. 4 at the Sixth Annual International Chefs Congress at the Park Avenue Armory in New York City. Vitamix, a recognized global leader in blender technology since 1921, sponsored the competition.

Each participating chef stepped up to the challenge by creating a dish that showcased the Vitamix blender in an innovative, creative, and delicious way.

Recreating his pumpkin banana pie recipe prepared in the Vita-Prep 3 before a panel of judges, Chef Reyes was selected as the Grand Prize winner. He received the Ultimate Vitamix Package: a Vita-Prep 3, a Vitamix XL, and The Quiet One from Vitamix, plus a $500 American Express Gift Certificate. The prize all together was valued at $5,000.

Six semi-finalists received a $500 travel stipend to travel to New York City to reconstruct their special dish and compete at the International Chefs Congress. Each semi-finalist also received a three-day industry pass to attend the Chefs Congress, as well as other prizes.

“With so many talented chefs using Vitamix, we’re always excited to see what new and exceptional recipes are being created in their kitchens,” says Rula Stamatis, marketing manager for Vita-Mix Corporation. “We hope the Vitamix Challenge inspires chefs to continue to think creatively about blending and to take advantage of the many unique features of all premium commercial blenders in our product line.”

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