Brandt was one of six chefs--all CIA graduates--to be a finalist in the challenge, a contest open exclusively to The CIA's alumni network. The six chefs participated in a two-part final challenge at the college's Hyde Park campus in New York on Aug. 5 and 6, where they prepared a three-course meal for a panel of judges from Royal Caribbean and The CIA. The panel also interviewed the finalists.
(l to r) Frank Weber, vice president, food and beverage operations, Royal Caribbean International; Maureen "Molly" Brandt; Lisa Bauer, senior vice president, hotel operations, Royal Caribbean International; and Ron DeSantis, director, CIA consulting, The CIA
Brandt's winning dish consisted of chilled lobster with fennel, carrots, citrus, caviar and tempura battered lobster; Provencal lamb loin with Dijon potato purée, ratatouille, pattypan squash and olive tapenade; and pistachio cake with whipped rosewater crème fraîche and carbonated raspberries.
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