Whitehead chef takes on cook-off challenge

Bistro Nights Whitehead chef Joni Lutzman.  INCT 22-734-CON

Bistro Nights Whitehead chef Joni Lutzman. INCT 22-734-CON

A Whitehead chef has put his culinary skills to the test over the weekend during the Rathlin Sound Maritime Festival.

Joni Lutzman from Bistro Nights Whitehead took part in the Ulster Chowder Championships on Sunday.

Competitors went head to head to win the title of 2016 Ulster Chowder Cook Off Winner at Ballycastle seafront.

The winning entrant, Paul Sheilds from Upstairs at Joe’s in Cushendall, will represent the province in the Kinsale Chowder Cook Off 2017.

A family-run, ‘pop-up’ enterprise, Bistro Nights Whitehead offers themed dining experiences, from French to Mexican nights.

Having launched in January 2016, owners are planning to expand the business into other areas such as Larne and will be announcing a new venue in the near future.

They will also be launching Whitehead Cookery School.

Bistro Nights Whitehead applied to enter the chowder championships as part of the maritime festival and were selected to represent County Antrim.

Joni said: “After our Mexican Fiesta this Saturday, I think we’ll have to put our chowder on the next menu as we had fantastic feedback from the public who were allowed to taste.

“We’ll definitely be applying next year to give Paul a run for his money but will be rooting for him in the next heat in Cork.”