Culinary Tent

Great recipes and tips were exchanged over the Giorgi Kitchen Demo Stage at the Mushroom Festival.  Special Thanks to all the chefs who shared their time with us!

Meet the Chefs

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Barry Sexton, Opinionated Palate Catering, Philadelphia
Chef Barry E. Sexton is an accomplished chef, food stylist, food consultant and a motivational speaker with his creative talents and training, A Philadelphia native, Chef Barry has successfully acquired over 30 years experience in the culinary arts. The Philadelphia Art Institute graduate always believed that great food is a combination of bold tastes, textures and color. Learn more about Chef Barry!

For 18 years, Chef Barry Sexton has been the driving force and visionary of the Opinionated Palate Catering service.For several years, this award-winning chef has participated in many food shows, where he collaborated with other Food Network chefs. In addition, he was featured on the popular Food Network Show, Dinner Impossible starring Robert Irvine.

Chef Sexton has taken on a new culinary challenge. A personal journey that explores the body, mind, and the desire for healthier living and food choices. His new approach is to explore ways to boost flavors and cut calories.


tina 1tina 3tina 2Christina Verrelli, America’s Best Home Cook, blog: epicuricloud.com
Christina Verrelli, Pillsbury Bake-Off Champion, America’s Best Cook Runner-Up and two-time Mushroom Festival Amateur Mushroom Soup winner is 2014’s Celebrity Chef! Learn home cooking techniques for mushrooms as well as how she became involved in competitive cooking. Visit Christina’s Blog: epicuricloud!


mavrajChef Jack Mavraj, La Verona Italian Restaurant
Since coming to Kennett Square about three years ago, Jack Mavraj, chef and owner of La Verona Italian Restaurant had made a reputation for his northern Italian cuisine. Mushrooms are a part of the menu from the Kennett Square martini to their mushroom gratin and spinach and mushroom ravioli. Check out LaVerona’s website!


sean1sean 2sean 1Sean “The Gourmet Bruce”
Sean Bruce, 14, is well versed in food and cooking and he loves to share his stories with others. He is the salesman of his family’s business, Lancaster Hummus Co., which has a booth at the Mushroom Festival. Learn more about Sean at his Facebook page.


steve 1steve 2steve 3Chef Steve Latona, Culinary Instructor at Montgomery County Community College
A Festival favorite, Chef Steve Latona, a Culinary Instructor at Montgomery County Community College, returns to the Mushroom Festival Kitchen with new interesting recipes for cooking with mushrooms. Check out his mushroom demonstration from 2010 on YouTube.


will 2will 1will 3Chef Will Tornay, owner Long Cove Foods, West Chester, PA
As a trained chef, Will has made the world of culinary his life’s passion. He trained at the Culinary Institute of America, in Hyde Park, NY and has worked in fine dining restaurants all across the country.

Several years ago, Will created a vegan scrapple recipe and Kennett Square mushrooms are among its main ingredients. Learn more about Chef Will and Long Cove Foods!


brett 2brett 2brett 3Chef Brett Huber, Portabello’s of Kennett Square
Chef Brett Huber returns to the Mushroom Festival’s Demo Kitchen to share what he’s learned about mushrooms since arriving in Kennett Square a few years ago.

His restaurant, Portabello’s offers unique mushroom dishes year-round, including his famous portabella cheese steak!

Check out Portavello’s website!


tyler 1tyler 2tyler 3Chef Tyler Pratt

Chef Tyler has lived in Kennett Square his whole life. “To this day I still live on a working mushroom farm that my family owns,” he says. “Mushrooms are in my blood.” His great grandfather, Howard Pratt, was one of the founding members for the American Mushroom Institute.

Chef Tyler attended and graduated from Pennsylvania College of Technology for Culinary Arts & Systems. During his college years, Chef Tyler had adventures cooking at the Kentucky Derby, Hunt Country Vineyards in the Finger Lakes, the Edgartown Yacht Club on Martha’s Vineyard, the Pennsylvania Farm Show, and Beaver Stadium in Penn State. His dream in life is to start a vineyard with a restaurant on the premises. He starts his career as a chef at Hartefeld National, in Avondale, Pa.


Other scenes from the Culinary Tent

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