Nine St. Paul restaurants are competing to catch the eye of Brian Boitano, the gold medal winning figure skater who is in town for the U.S. Figure Skating Championships.
The 1988 Olympic medalist is a renowned foodie, formerly hosting the Food Network's "What Would Brian Boitano Make?" and he's the judge for the "Taste of the Championships" contest organized by Visit St. Paul.
The competition is running while the best skaters in the country compete at the Xcel Energy Center in the Figure Skating Championships, which end on Sunday.
Boitano will judge each restaurant on "flavor, creativity and nutritional value," according to the Visit St. Paul website, with the winners announced at the Xcel on Saturday.
"I'm really excited to be a part of this unique Taste of the Championships promotion," Boitano told the website. "It is a perfect pairing of my two loves - figure skating and culinary creativity."
Boitano will be sampling and judging the entrees on Wednesday evening between 6 p.m. and 8.30 p.m. at the nine competing restaurants.
Each eatery has created a special meal that diners can sample themselves.
Here's what they're serving up:
Citizen Supper Club: "Kiss & Cry" – a sweet and spicy wild striped bass with bulgur wheat, olives, roasted artichoke, fennel and orange. (Costs $24).
Great Waters Brewing Company: "Tano Jump Pork Tenderloin" – A 4 oz. pork tenderloin served on wild rice and sautéed vegetables. (Costs $13.95).
Kincaid's: "Signature Move Seared Ahi" – Togarashi and Sesame crusted Ahi served on coconut jasmine rice with Thai curry sauce. (Costs $31.95).
Pazzaluna: "Trip Jump Bell Pepper Risotto" - Braised beef brisket on smoked bell pepper risotto (Costs $28).
Rival House: "Season's Best" Citrus broiled salmon with spinach and farro with mushrooms. (Costs $18)
St. Paul Grill: "Triple Axel Seafood Linguine" – shrimp, mussels, sea bass and halibut in a lemon garlic cream sauce (Costs $35.95).
Sakura: "Cherry Flip Bento Box" – a sashimi and asparagus beef roll with ginger sauce. Japanese-style egg omelet, with steamed rice and a salad. (Costs $15).
Tom Reid's: "Waltz Jump Walleye" – walleye on kale salad with mango salsa, and a spicy wild rice. (Costs: $17.95).
Vieux Carré: "From the Ice Blackened Walleye" – blackened walleye, ancient grains bar, local honey, collard greens, herb yogurt and chervil. (Costs $21).
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