Organizers announce a $2,500 cash prize for the winner, in addition to a coveted state title
The Alabama Seafood Cook-Off (ASCO) is back for the 7th annual, statewide culinary competition. And we’re looking for a few good chefs to help us make this year’s event the best one yet in light of the 10-year anniversary of the Alabama Seafood Marketing Commission’s official launch of the Alabama Gulf Seafood brand.
On May 16, this year’s Alabama Seafood Cook-Off will once again take place at The Lodge at Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores where four selected chef teams will prepare seafood dishes with delicious Alabama Gulf Seafood in hopes of taking home the top chef crown ... along with a $2,500 cash reward.
If you’re an Alabama chef and you’d like to be considered for this year’s ASCO, the registration form is now live. Forms and recipes must be submitted no later than April 25. We will be announcing our four finalists no later than May 2.
As in previous years, each dish will be judged based on five different categories, each worth up to 20 points out of a total of 100 points:
- Presentation, General Impression, and Serving Methods
- Creativity and Practicality
- Composition and Harmony of Ingredients
- Correct Preparation and Craftsmanship
- Flavor, Taste, and Texture
These five categories are the same criteria used in the Great American Seafood Cook-Off (GASCO) in New Orleans, LA, which our winning chef will be participating in. It’s been over a full decade since Alabama’s last GASCO winner—Chef Jim Smith in 2011—so this year’s ASCO winner will have their work cut out for them in representing the state of Alabama on a national stage.
This year’s ASCO judges are Chef Scott Simpson (Executive Chef and Co-Owner of the Depot in Auburn and the 2021 ASCO winner), Bob Baumhower (Owner of Baumhower’s Restaurant), Chris Nelson (Vice President of Bon Secour Fisheries, Inc.) and Chef James Balster (Executive Chef of the Lodge at Gulf State Park).
This year’s Alabama Seafood Cook-Off will be open to the public, so make your plans to join us at the swankiest hotel in Gulf Shores in May. And if you’re a chef interested in competing, make sure you fill out our registration form by April 25!