Most fundraisers don't feature top area chefs and local firefighters sweating it out on stage, cooking up dishes limited only by the ingredients found in the local food pantry.
But then the Arlington Food Assistance Center has found a popular, atypical fundraiser that does just that.
The center will host the second Chiefs vs. Chefs at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 16, at the Clarendon Ballroom. Tickets range from $100 to $1,000.
The event, billed as Round 2 of last year's fundraiser by the same name, will feature Bayou Bakery Chef David Guas, Majestic Chef Shannon Overmiller and Fuego Cocina y Tequileria Chef Alfredo Solis cooking against three Arlington firefighters.
They'll engage in a three-round cook-off, live and on-stage, using only ingredients from the local food pantry.
“Knowing what we’re competing for is a great driving force when I’m gearing up for the challenge, especially since this is a charitable event that’s embedded in my local community," Guas said in a statement. "But charity or not, I’m in it to win it. Although my competition faces heat on a daily basis – and may have a solid reputation for whippin’ up some good food – I think my ability to layer heat with flavors is going to be the reason I come out unscorched."
Winners will be awarded a Golden Eggplant trophy. They also get bragging rights. Last year, the chefs won two of the three rounds at the inaugural event at the Key Bridge Marriott.
"You know, they're firefighters first and cooks second, but they can get serious in the kitchen too. We plan on bringing our 'A-game' and taking no prisoners, all in the name of fun and a great cause," Fire Chief James Schwartz said in a statement.
This year's judges are Grace Shea with the Lebanese Taverna, Todd Pozinsky of Carlyle and Greg Hamilton with Arlington Magazine.
The Arlington Food Assistance Center serves about 1,500 families each week and has 17 distribution centers throughout the county.