BALTIMORE (WJZ) — So who’s the top chef in the Baltimore area? We’re about to find out.

Ron Matz reports there will be food, wine and much more in a summer of sizzle.

It’s on! Preparations are now underway for the fifth annual Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament. Think of the NCAA Tournament but with great food and wine.

“We’ve created a tournament that’s somewhat like the NCAA brackets and Iron Chef and kind of merged them together,” said tournament organizer Erik Folkert. “We are basically soliciting the best chefs in the Baltimore-Washington area. Today we’re in the selection process. We have two teams each night face off and see which is the better chef. They move on to the next bracket until we have one winner at the end of the tournament.”

Bistro RX Chef Wilbur Cox, Jr. can’t wait to hit the arena.

“I’m here to win. I don’t compete to not win. All the equipment is provided so I’m going to come out with guns blazing,” Cox said.

Chefs will compete for $12,000 in prizes at the Inn at the Colonnade. This year, Maryland’s Boordy Vineyards will be part of the action.

“Their decision to bring on a local winery was something we absolutely wanted to jump onto. Being a Maryland winery, having our roots in the state and having to help build what they want to do is something we wanted to be a part of,” said Zachary Augustine, Boordy Vineyards.

One of the best parts of the competition: you can get up close and personal with the chefs.

“The actual competition begins June 15; tickets are available now. The final is in August,” Folkert said. “This is where you walk right up to the action. You can see what’s going on; you can see the liquid nitrogen being poured. You can see the smoking guns being fired up. It’s really very exciting.”

The Mason Dixon Master Chef Competition begins June 15. Ten percent of the proceeds will benefit Meals on Wheels. For more information, click here.


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