Monday, April 2, 2012

Van Andel Arena Executive Chef Wins ‘Chef of the Year’ Award

Savor…Grand Rapids/Van Andel Arena Executive Chef Chris Simpson has been awarded the ‘Chef of the Year’ award by the American Culinary Federation’s Grand Rapids Chapter.

Per the American Culinary Federation, “The Chef of the Year award recognizes an outstanding culinarian who works and cooks in a full-service dining facility. This person has demonstrated the highest standard of culinary skills, advanced the cuisine of America, and given back to the profession through the development of students and apprentices.”

In 1963, ACF created the Chef of the Year Award to acknowledge Walter Roth, AAC, for his tireless efforts to promote and elevate the profession. The award has grown in prestige, and today is the highest honor annually bestowed by ACF.

Along with Simpson, Savor…Grand Rapids Line Chef Andrew Eggert was also awarded as ‘Chef Professional of the Year’ for his work at Van Andel Arena and in the community.

With more than two decades of culinary experience behind him, Simpson, CEC, received his culinary degree from the prestigious Johnson and Wales University. Simpson came over to Savor…Grand Rapids two years ago but has served as an executive chef around the Grand Rapids area for 25 years. His culinary passion has guided him to be an active and current member of the American Culinary Federation and a 20 year member of the Kent Career Technical Center Culinary Advisory Board. Chef Simpson has guided teams at top catering venues in West Michigan as well as many fine restaurants.

Organizationally, SMG has two separate operating divisions, one for stadiums and arenas and another for convention centers, providing the same effective business principles to two distinctively different business segments. Savor…Grand Rapids is the arena’s exclusive catering, concessionaire and event services company.