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A foodie carnival hits Houston: Top chefs transform the tired fair fare into gourmet delights

A foodie carnival hits Houston: Top chefs transform tired fair fare

For this week's KHOU CultureMap Moment, Channel 11 morning news anchor Lily Jang and CultureMap food writer Eric Sandler visited with Eleven: XI executive chef Kevin Bryant, who is organizing the first-ever Culinary Carnival on Sunday from noon to 3 p.m. in the restaurant's parking lot and patio on West Gray.

Seventeen top Houston chefs will attempt to skewer the competition with gourmet variations of food-on-a-stick, like the kind you'd find at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo or any carnival — only better. "It kind of brings them back to being a kid," Bryant says.

Among the chefs competing are Americas' David Cordua, Susie Jimenez of Trenza, Triniti's Ryan Hildebrand, Nara's Donald Chang, Michael Pellegrino of Max's Wine Dive, and Robert Castre of Latin Bites.

Prizes will be awarded for Best Dish, Most Creative and People's Choice. Master mixologists will also battle to make the coolest cocktail, as judged by a panel including former Houston Dynamo star (and current executive) Brian Ching and Urban Swank founders Felice Sloan and Shanna Jones.

The event benefits the PULSE young professionals group at St. Luke's Foundation. Tickets are $50 in advance and $60 at the door ($40 for PULSE members), which includes food tastings and adult beverage samplings, a DJ and other entertainment.

Watch the CultureMap Moment:

KHOU CultureMap Moment Culinary Carnival food on a stick June 2014
All kinds of delicacies-on-a-stick will be part of the first Culinary Carnival fundraiser. Courtesy photo