Winners Announced at 2019 St. Louis Taste of Elegance

Columbia, Mo.,—Chef Russel Cunningham with the St. Louis Union Station Hotel in St. Louis garnered top honors at the Taste of Elegance culinary competition held November 4 at the Renaissance St. Louis Hotel Airport. His winning entrée, titled Herb Crusted Pork Tenderloin, earned him the $1,000 prize.


The event was sponsored by the Missouri Pork Association, the Illinois Pork Producers Association, Smithfield, Missouri Wine and Grape Board, Mercer Culinary and the Renaissance St. Louis Hotel Airport. The event was also promoted by the St. Louis Area Foodbank. Ten chefs competed in the competition using Smithfield pork. The entrées were judged on originality, taste and presentation.


Chef Kenneth E. Hayden Jr. with K Hayden Chef Services & Catering in Dellwood received second place and $500 with his entrée, Maple Brined Pork Chop with Apple Balsamic Reduction, Celery Root Whipped Potatoes, Charred Brussels Sprouts, Pumpkin Puree, Pork Butt Wellington. Chef Shun Ammons with 1818 Chophouse in O’Fallon, Illinois, prepared the third place entrée, titled Braised Pork Bell, and received $250. Chef Timothy Eagan with TME Private Chef in St. Louis received the People’s Choice Award, receiving $100 in prize money for his entrée titled Sous Vide Pork Tenderloin, Braised Pork and Potato Hash, Pork Fat Roasted Winter Vegetables, Mustard and Pork Jus.


“We are happy to sponsor the Taste of Elegance,” said Marcus Belshe, chairman of the Missouri Pork Association. “Working with chefs to create new and exciting pork dishes for their menus is a great way to increase pork demand and introduce its flavor and versatility to consumers.”


The Missouri Pork Association represents the state’s pork producers in the areas of promotion, research, education and legislation. For more information about this or any other programs of the Missouri Pork Association, go to, or call the Missouri Pork Association office at (573) 445-8375.


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