Oxtail-stuffed tomato, grilled shrimp with lotus root chips, strawberry & buttermilk panna cotta. These are just a few of the dishes that will be on the menu during three Mondays in March when Luce at InterContinental SF Hotel partners with the City College of San Francisco (CCSF) Culinary Arts & Hospitality Studies program for the 11th Annual Culinary Clash 2022, a fundraiser for CCSF's Culinary Arts & Hospitality Studies scholarship program.

Six rising CCSF students and recent graduates will showcase their very own three-course fine dining menu (one team of two per evening) on March 14, 21 and 28 as they compete for scholarship and cash prizes. Luce’s executive chef Rogelio Garcia will lead the panel of guest judges who assess the tasting menus on flavor, technique, pricing and originality.

"We are thrilled to be a part of the Culinary Clash at the InterContinental SF hotel again this year," says Keith Hammerich, Department Chair for Culinary Arts & Hospitality Studies at City College of San Francisco. "Our students have gained an invaluable experience at past Culinary Clash events. Luce and the InterContinental have been a great partner since 2019 and are very supportive of our program. We are so grateful that our students have been given the opportunity to take on this fun challenge." 

"As we embark on our 11th year producing the Culinary Clash, the most remarkable part of it all is seeing students' self-confidences soar throughout the process of developing and executing their own menus," says Gail Gerber, InterContinental SF Hotel’s area director of sales and marketing.

Since its inception in 2012, the Culinary Clash has expanded to include other InterContinental Hotels Group properties in San Francisco and as far as Mexico City, raising more than $150,000 in scholarship across the Americas.

Napa Valley's grower/producer winery Hoopes Vineyard joins the Culinary Clash 2022 as the official wine sponsor. Hoopes offers an array of varietals that the guest chefs can choose among to offer the perfect wine pairings for their menus.

Culinary Clash 2022 is open to the pubic (tickets are $50 per person with reservations available on Open Table).  If you can’t be there in public, you can follow live updates at instagram.com/lucesf.

The announced student chefs and menus are:


March 14: Tina Tian and Joshua Roberts


1st Course: Steamed Shrimp, Water Chestnut Dumpling, Oyster Mushroom Salad 

2nd Course: Oxtail Stuffed Tomato, Handmade Noodle, English Peas 

3rd Course: Mandarin Sorbet, Pistachio Mousse with Chocolate Shell, Blood Orange Sauce, Green Onion Cookie Crumbles


March 21: Kannanuth Lert-ariyaphokhin & Cassandra Tran 


1st Course: Grilled Shrimp, Cucumber, Tomato, Shallots, Red Grapefruit Salad, with Thai Chili Fish Sauce Vinaigrette, Lotus Root Chips

2nd Course: Fried Halibut, Tamari Caviar, Ginger, Scallion on Top of Fried Crispy Rice Cake, Bok Choy

3rd Course: Pandan Tart, Meringue, Toasted Coconut, Coconut Lemongrass Sorbet, Lime Zest, Almond Crumbs


March 28: Rochean Chatman and Alexander Li 


1st Course: Quinoa & Avocado Salad, Lemon Honey

2nd Course: Seared Duck Breast, Bigarade Sauce, Roasted Rainbow Carrots, Taro Root Puree

3rd Course: Strawberry & Buttermilk Panna Cotta, Cocoa Nib Tuile

If you’re anywhere near San Francisco on January 13, you might want to take advantage of “Meeting Essentials: A One-Day Conference and Exhibition.” Developed by Arnie Roberts (pictured here), founder and president of Smart-Reg International, a leader in the emerging registration technologies for the trade show and meeting industry, the conference, which is free to qualified meeting and event professionals, will take place at South San Francisco Conference Center. 


Mark your 2022 calendar for two key MPI Southern California Chapter gatherings. On January 13, the annual “State of the Industry” event will take place at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Michael Dominguez, president and CEO of Associated Luxury Hotels International will be the keynote speaker, discussing where we are headed, how to navigate the challenges associated with resuming in-person events and how to move our industry, and our role as event professionals, forward. Following the presentation, MPISCC’s Office of the President will host a 30-minute town hall.


There are lots of worthy events taking place in California during this holiday season. We’d like to give a shout out to one of our favorites: Pawlidays with Sofitel LA and Wagmor Pets Dog Rescue, taking place in the hotel lobby from 10 am to 2 pm on Saturday, December 18.