Everything is tastier in Texas

Hill Country duo takes home Iron Chef title at Chef to Chef Conference in New Orleans.
(Left) Nelson Millan and (right) Eva Barrios at the Chef to Chef conference in New Orleans.

When I recently attended the WGC Dell Match Play, golf course grub included local vendors Torchy's Tacos and Mighty Cone. Pretty good "walking around" food. But after reading what chef from Austin Country Club, Eva Barrios, was just cooking up, I clearly missed out.

On March 27, Barrios teamed up with San Antonio Country Club chef Nelson Millan to win the Chef to Chef Iron Chef challenge in New Orleans (a city with its own dazzling culinary reputation). The event was part of an educational conference featuring some of the top chefs in the golf & country club world. Barrios and Millan took on three other teams at the event to take home the crown.

If you find the clubhouse cuisine lacking at your home course, be prepared to cry at what the dishes they whipped up:

The first dish Millán and Barrios prepared in their semi-final faceoff with Dudley and Strickland was a Szechuan-dusted duck breast, paired with a Cajun fried rice made with crawfish, swiss chard and eggs. Beneath it all was a spiced beet puree. The second dish prepared by “Team Texas” for the finals competition vs. Ponzio and Beck (who had defeated Daddezio and Garbacz in their semi-final faceoff) was a Cajun-themed South African U8 prawn seasoned with curry power, paired with a red curry sauce and Thai-style grits made with tomato and basil.

Next year at the WGC, I may have to stroll past the food vendors and wander my way into the clubhouse to see what Barrios has cooking. The members have pretty good out on Lake Austin.

The next Chef to Chef Conference takes place March 1-3, 2020 in Charlotte, N.C.

Up Next

Autoplay is paused

2019 Iron Chef Mystery Basket

Brandon Tucker is the Sr. Managing Editor for GolfPass and was the founding editor of Golf Advisor in 2014, he was the managing editor for Golf Channel Digital's Courses & Travel. To date, his golf travels have taken him to over two dozen countries and nearly 600 golf courses worldwide. While he's played some of the most prestigious courses in the world, Tucker's favorite way to play the game is on a great muni in under three hours. Follow Brandon on Twitter at @BrandonTucker and on Instagram at @btuck34.
More from the author
7 Min Read
September 21, 2021
Large buddies groups love playing Ryder Cup-style, multi-day team events on their golf vacations. And what could be more epic than playing a Ryder Cup match on a former (or future) Ryder Cup venue?
2 Min Read
September 21, 2021
Bernhard Langer recalls the turning point that led to a European wave at the Ryder Cup matches
4 Min Read
September 10, 2021
Pete Dye's golf course designs set the bar for innovation, creativity and challenge. We've compiled his top courses as rated on Golf Advisor by regular golfers like you.
4 Min Read
September 7, 2021
A recent visit to a trio of Midwest courses was a reminder that there's a lot to love about playing golf on campus.
3 Min Read
August 27, 2021
USA and Europe's finest women prepare to face off on a Donald Ross Midwestern classic. Here's a hole-by-hole guide to venerable Inverness.
9 Min Read
August 26, 2021
Who should you tip and how much? From caddies to bag boys to locker room attendants, here's how much cash you should bring to the club.
3 Min Read
September 16, 2021
Some of the world's famous venues are littered with sand.
1 Min Read
August 27, 2021
Burn calories and shave strokes at the same time.
3 Min Read
September 7, 2021
Some dismiss "outside operations" as entry-level work, but it can make or break a golf experience.
11 Min Read
September 9, 2021
Once considered novelties, par-3 courses are increasingly popular among traveling golfers, club members and communities.
Load More
Now Reading
Everything is tastier in Texas