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Kristen Thibeault won S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna Almost Famous Chef

Kristen Thibeault won the 11th edition of the S.Pellegrino and Acqua Panna Almost Famous Chef competition, held at The Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley, California, on March 11.

Kristen Thibeault is studying at Le Cordon Bleu College in Boston and is one of the 10 students who participated in the final competition in Napa Valley. She captivated the jury earning a one-year paid apprenticeship with one of the chef judges, in addition to a $13,000 cash prize.

Almost Famous Chef is an annual competition with students participating from 75 leading culinary schools in U.S. and Canada. Students are involved in 10 regional competitions every year in January and February. The regionals involve mentoring from the judges alongside the competition. The 10 regional winners compete at the final competition. Dana Cowin of Food & Wine, Betsy Andrews of Saveur and Mitchell Davis of The James Beard Foundation were some of the names of the judges this year.

The Mistery Basket Award was assigned to Jean-Christophe Comtois, student of the École hôtelière de la Capitale in Montréal, Québec, Canada. He also won the online Acqua Panna Fan Favorite Award. Ace Gonzalez of the Culinary Institute of America, San Antonio, Texas, took the Signature Dish Prize.

For the first time this year, Almost Famous Chef’s Facebook fans had the possibility to share their own Signature Dish, win a trip to Napa Valley to the finals and taste their own recipe made by a chef.

Read about Almost Famous Chef 2013 on Fine Dining Lovers