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Taste of Bullhead a hot ticket

February 24, 2019

FORT MOHAVE — Saturday’s Taste of Bullhead event wore a “Fire & Ice” theme, but the event itself leaned heavily toward fire. As in, with all 424 seats sold, it proved to be a hot ticket.

The food competition, a fundraiser for the Bullhead Chamber Ambassadors, featured 13 establishments vying for top appetizer, entree and dessert honors.

New this year were rewards for attendees who best personified the theme. Michael Cherry and Vanessa Bell, and Daniel Gay and Maria Pynakker were crowned kings and queens of ice and fire, respectively.

“It’s been fun to see how people interpret the theme,” said event chairwoman Jackie Walker.

J.P.’s Pub & Grill took the best appetizer prize, with a prawn served in a secret house sauce.

The host Avi Resort & Casino was deemed to have the best entree, a coffee-crusted filet mignon.

“It’s a nice little birthday present,” said Felix Rodriguez, room chef at the Avi’s Moonshadow Grille restaurant (his actual birthday is Monday). “The Avi allows us to be really creative and try a lot of new stuff.”

Rodriguez said the entree will appear on the Moonshadow Grille’s menu when it is updated shortly.

Sous chef James Hope put other resorts on notice after the win.

“This is just a steppingstone to winning the Chefs Fest in June,” he said.

Pixie Dust Treats took the prize for ritziest booth. The centerpiece of the booth was a faux-cake shaped like a dream castle. Another set of cakes resembled hearts of various sizes.

Firehouse Coffee took best dessert honors, swapping trophies from last year with Pixie Dust Treats. Server Brittany Davis was responsible for the establishment’s dessert lineup, including some based on its most popular drinks.

“I’m a little bit of a mad scientist,” Davis said.

Her inventions included a dirty vanilla chai, a lemon cheesecake and a French toast cup.

“I’m just glad we beat Pixie Dust,” Davis said later. “(Pixie Dust owner Sandi Goodrich) did a killer job; she always does.”

Walker said she expected the eighth edition of the event to be the most profitable to date. She said she hoped to make $30,000 for the evening.

Proceeds were earmarked for an electronic reader board for the Bullhead Area Chamber of Commerce building, which would replace the marquee-style board it has now.

The event also included a live auction and raffles for $1,000 in cash and more than 40 bottles of spirits.