ABC’s daytime, Emmy Award-winning show, “The Chew,” hosted a nationwide cooking competition to find the ‘Best Chef on the Block’ the week of February 19th. After winning the Washington, DC battle last month, Radiator’s Executive Chef Jonathan Dearden competed against two other regional chefs and took home the East Coast champion title!
The panel of judges included Chef Amanda Freitag, a judge on Food Network’s “Chopped” and a former competitor on “America’s Next Iron Chef,” and Chef Josh Capon of Lure Fishbar, B&B Winepub and El Toro Blanco in New York City. Chef Jonathan chose a special paella dish for the East Coast battle, where he was up against one chef from Atlanta and another from Chicago – both regional winners from their respective cities.
“When my twin brother and I where younger, we had a live-in nanny from Brazil,” explained Chef Jonathan. “She made a paella for us every Sunday that we absolutely loved! It was our favorite thing to eat. This dish felt special and I had no idea what it truly was until I became a chef. So I chose to do a paella – risotto style – with chorizo, shrimp, calamari, mussels, green peas, and curry butter.”
In January, Chef Jonathan competed in a live cook-off to make a dish that best represented Washington, D.C. Raised in Sterling, Virginia, Radiator’s executive chef incorporated the familiar flavors of his hometown with a Chesapeake crab cake, accompanied by a half-smoke and potato-apple hash, and finished with an Old Bay remoulade.
Both the paella and Chesapeake crab cake dishes will be making special pop-up appearances on Radiator’s dinner menu throughout the year. Chef Jonathan recently launched a new happy hour menu which includes lobster grilled cheese and disco tater tots (house made tots, Gorgonzola, bacon and chives) as well as a new brunch menu with crab beignets and duck & grits.
Radiator. Located in the Kimpton Mason & Rook Hotel. 1430 Rhode Island Ave NW, Washington, DC 20005. (202) 742-3150.