Y.E.S. Chef! Youth Culinary Program and Competition

The Y.E.S. Chef! Youth Culinary Program and Competition is one of our Brighter Futures Youth Enrichment Service programs. This program is about bringing local talent to our WNC restaurant/hospitality community while investing in Asheville’s future culinary artisans.

The Details

  • We team up four high school students with the chef at a participating restaurant where he/she mentors them in the fundamentals of culinary technique.
  • While working in the restaurant they learn to create two healthy food items that will be presented in a culinary competition.
  • On a Saturday in November of 2019, the students and their restaurant mentors will participate in a food competition at A-B Tech.
  • The winner of the competition will hold bragging rights (along with a traveling trophy) for one year!

Participating High Schools and Restaurants

School and student selection will be coming in the Spring. If you have students who are interested in participating, please contact us at [email protected].

Become a Program Sponsor

We will be looking for businesses to sponsor the talents of our youth through the Y.E.S. Chef! Youth Culinary Program and Competition (click here to view our current list of sponsors). We will have a number of affordable opportunities to showcase the products and services your business offers to our community. Pre- and post-event promotion on social media, in press releases, and printed flyers will let people know your business cares about investing in our youth. You will also have the ability to get in front of a large audience on the day of the event.  Sponsorship opportunities for the 2019 program will be coming soon.

Attend the Competition

Date: On a Saturday in November

Time: Noon to 3:00 pm (arrive any time between those hours and stay as long as you would like)

LocatIon: A-B Tech, Magnolia Room

Details: Coming soon

Judging:  There are two types of judging that will occur at this event. We will have a panel of professionals from the restaurant community judging the dishes. The youth attending the event will also have the opportunity to judge the food items made by their peers. When the youth arrive at the event, they will be given a ballot to complete. At the end of the event, the ballots will be tallied. The winning restaurant will receive a trophy that will be housed at their location for one year. The winning students will receive a chef jacket.

Door Prizes: The Joseph Initiative will be raffling off various prizes throughout the day. You do not need to be present to win a prize. Click here or email [email protected] to donate a door prize.

Entertainment: We will have music and other activities on the day of the event.

2018 Gold Sponsors


2018 Silver Sponsors


Award Sponsors


         Joe and Jean McGuire