The third-annual Forest Trace Golden Matzah Bowl was held March 22. More than 100 people turned out at the upscale resort retirement community to watch both local restaurants and individuals compete for the coveted golden matzah bowl prize. Also at stake were cash donations to the winners' charity of choice.
This year's theme was boxing. While you might at first think that's a weird theme for a matzah ball competition, think again. The boxing match referred to using a boxed mix as a base for the balls (as in Streit's or Manischewitz). Of course, the contestants donned boxing gloves and two of the judges were in the boxing field -- Sam Cohen, a former boxing manager and current vice president of
the Florida Boxing Hall of Fame and Matt Baiamonte, owner of the 5th
Street Gym. Other judges included Elaine Grossinger Etess, of the famous Grossinger hotel family; Sun-Sentinel food columnist Claire Perez; and Miami New Times food critic Lee Klein (read Klein's first-person account on judging here).
Entertainment included an organist and singer. Admission for residents and guests was a box of matzah ball mix, which were donated to WECARE, a Broward organization that
distributes food baskets to needy families for Passover.
Here are the winners from the Third-Annual Matzah Bowl competition:
Best All-Around: Ben's Kosher Deli, Boca Raton
People's Choice: Sage Bagels
Best From Scratch: Josh's Deli
& Appetizing (Surfside)
KO Award - Best-Out-of-the-Box: Josh's Deli & Appetizing (a newcomer/rookie competitor award)
Best of Broward: Toojay's Gourmet Deli
Oooh, It's So Good Award: Zinger's
Deli (Boca Raton)
Best Floater (fluffiest): Mo's Bagel & Deli
Most Like Mom's: Ally's Comfort Café
Chef's Choice: The Original Pastrami Club
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Best From a Box: Sharon Locke (for jazzed-up packaged mix)