Prohibition Pig Chef Named Top Chef of the Champlain Valley

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Prohibition Pig Chef Named Top Chef of the Champlain Valley

Michael Werneke Named Top Chef at CVAA's Benefit to Support Meals on Wheels

Michael Werneke of Prohibition Pig - 2013 Top Chef Winner

Burlington, VT - Michael Werneke of the Prohibition Pig was named the Top Chef of the Champlain Valley defeating Chef Shawn Calley of the Amuse at the Essex Resort & Spa ( 2011 & 2012 Top Chef winner) and Chef Marcus Hamblett of One Federal. The chefs competed in an iron chef inspired competition learning only moments before they started cooking that this year the secret ingredient was Switchback Ale and Switchback Roasted Red. Werneke impressed the judges with his success in incorporating the secret ingredient. According to Judge Rod Rehwinkel, Owner of Clear Culinary Consulting, Werneke and his sous chef took the title because they used the Switchback Ale in the best way. “The dish displayed the Switchback in two very noticeable ways. Bold seasonings but not overdone.”

The winning appetizer and entrée presented by Prohibition Pig was a Chicken Liver Mousse with a sunny side egg over fried smashed potatoes with a Switchback maple brown sugar glaze. For their entrée they presented a dish “inspired by the Southern Cuisine found at the Pig” stated Werneke. Fried Chicken in a Switchback Roasted Red beer batter with field greens braised in Switchback Ale, baby carrots, and pork sausage cracklins. There was a huge roar from the crowd as Judge Rod Rehwinkel announced the win for Werneke and Prohibition Pig. “ We are really excited about the win; we had no idea what to expect going in.” For Werneke the real success of the evening was the money raised to support area seniors. “ I just think it’s great that so much money was raised for CVAA and that everyone from the spectators to the competitiors seemed to be having lots of fun.” Nearly $29,000 was raised to support Meals on Wheels at the Top Chef of the Champlain Valley, enough to provide over 5800 meals to seniors in need. Over 245,000 Meals on Wheels are delivered each year in the Champlain Valley to homebound seniors. A near capacity crowd packed the Maple Ballroom at UVM's Davis Center to watch Werneke be named the Top Chef. The Top Chef of the Champlain Valley recognizes the talents of the areas' top chefs and supports local farms, using all Vermont ingredients in this gourmet cook-off.

CVAA is a non-profit organization that empowers seniors to live well. CVAA works with seniors and caregivers, offering guidance and providing the support and services they need, when they need them. With the help of community partners and volunteers, CVAA serves over 10,000 seniors. Established in 1974, CVAA is known as the resource for seniors in the Champlain Valley (Addison, Chittenden, Franklin and Grand Isle Counties). For more information call 1-800-642-5119 or click on

Download flyers with more information about the Top Chef event and sponsorship opportunities.

Thanks to Our Sponsors

Platinum Sponsors

MVP Health Care

Diamond Sponsors

The Lodges

Gold Sponsors

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Walmart Logo

Switchback Brewing Logo

Shelburne Vineyard Logo

Cabot Cheese Coop Logo

Alzheimer's Association Logo


Vermont Business Magazine Logo

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Converse Home



Silver Sponsors

Pillsbury Senior Communities

Holiday House & Franklin County Rehab

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Bronze Sponsors

People’s Trust Company
Bayada Home Health Care
Jericho Settlers Farm
New England Federal Credit Union
Kinney Drugs Foundation
Price Chopper
Starr Farm Nursing Center

Friend of CVAA

City Market
Grippin Donlan Pinkham
Hanson & Doremus Investment Management
Money Care, LLC