MONTGOMERY, Ala. — Bassmaster Elite Series anglers are known for their expert-level skills at locating and landing bass. But how do their cooking skills measure up? Fans attending the second leg of Toyota Trucks All-Star Week, the Evan Williams Bourbon All-Star Championship taking place on the Alabama River out of Montgomery, Ala., July 29-31, 2011, will find out firsthand.
On Saturday, July 30, three Bassmaster Elite Series anglers — Jason Quinn, Chris Lane and J. Todd Tucker — will be paired with local celebrity chefs Michael Serdula of The Olive Room , Ben Skelley, chef/owner of Chop House Vintage Year , and Michael Schwartz, executive chef of Capital City Club, to compete in the Evan Williams Bourbon & Big Green Egg Grill with the Greats Cook-off at the Montgomery Riverfront.
Tucker, who has been sponsored by Big Green Egg since 2009 and whose boat sports the company’s wrap, is looking forward to a different type of challenge with his fellow anglers.
“It’s great to bring the cooking world into the bass fishing world. It’ll be good to get a little competition going between the three of us and not have to fish for it,” he said.
Each team will be given a basket with four to five mandatory ingredients, including Evan Williams Bourbon, they must use, and they will be given access to a general pantry. Paragon Distributors will supply pantry items, and all items must be prepared on the Big Green Egg.
Competitors will be given one hour to cook, and a 20-minute judging session will follow. The winning team will take home a Large Big Green Egg with Nest and a prize pack from B.A.S.S. sponsors. All teams will win a cookbook and Evan Williams product.
“Evan Williams Bourbon is not only great for drinking, but it goes great with grilling as well. This is why we are thrilled to team up with Big Green Egg on the Grill with the Greats Cook-off. We are looking forward to the event and hope our angler, Jason Quinn, will pull out all the stops and make use of some of our Evan Williams ingredients for a big win!” said Hannah Venhoff, assistant brand manager, Heaven Hill Distilleries Inc.
Public product sampling will take place from 2 p.m. (CT) to 3 p.m. (CT), and the cook-off — hosted by Bassmaster Elite Series’ Dave Mercer — officially begins at 3 p.m. (CT), with judging scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. (CT). The exciting panel of judges includes Hooked Up! hosts Tommy Sanders and Mark Zona; Mix 103’s Jay St. John; and Y 102’s Rex Long. The competition will be streamed live on Bassmaster.com.
“I look forward to the cook-off,” said Lane. “I love to cook on my Big Green Egg when I am not fishing so it will be neat to be in a competition for cooking. I am taking this pretty seriously, so those other guys better watch out.”
The All-Star championship features the eight Bassmaster Elite Series anglers who advanced as finalists from the first leg, the Ramada All-Star Semi-Final in Wetumpka (July 23-24). The anglers will be seeded in a bracket-style head-to-head tournament. Winner takes all: $100,000.
Daily launches will be at 7:30 a.m. (CT) from the Montgomery Riverfront, and weigh-ins will begin at 5 p.m. (CT).
For more information about Evan Williams Bourbon, go to www.evanwilliams.com.
Learn more about the Big Green Egg at www.biggreenegg.com.
For more information about Toyota Trucks All-Star Week, visit Bassmaster.com.
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Official Sponsors: Toyota, Bass Pro Shops, Berkley, Evan Williams Bourbon, Humminbird, Mercury, Minn Kota, Skeeter Boats, Triton Boats, Yamaha
2011 Bassmaster Elite Series Supporting Sponsors: Lowrance, Luck “E” Strike, Nitro Boats, Power-Pole, Ramada
For more than 40 years, B.A.S.S. has served as the authority on bass fishing. The organization advances the sport through advocacy, outreach and an expansive tournament structure while connecting directly with the passionate community of bass anglers through its Bassmaster media vehicles.
The Bassmaster brand and its multimedia platforms are guided by a mission to serve all fishing fans. Through its industry-leading publications — Bassmaster Magazine and B.A.S.S. Times — comprehensive website Bassmaster.com, ESPN2 and Outdoor Channel television programming, Bassmaster provides rich, leading-edge content true to the lifestyle.
The Bassmaster Tournament Trail includes the Bassmaster Elite Series, Bass Pro Shops Bassmaster Open Series, B.A.S.S. Federation Nation events presented by Yamaha and Skeeter Boats and the ultimate celebration of competitive fishing, the Bassmaster Classic.
B.A.S.S. offers an array of services to its more than 500,000 members and remains focused on issues related to conservation and water access. The organization is headquartered in Celebration, Fla.