VALPARAISO | Life Care Center of The Willows was awarded the highest possible honor, Top Chef, at the Third Annual Taste of Care.
Sponsored by Prompt Ambulance, the competition pitted 11 of the area’s skilled nursing facilities and assisted livings against each other in a fierce but friendly contest to garner the most votes from “celebrity” judges in the community. The Willows won with Chef Bernie Karlov’s recipe for slow-cooked country-style spare ribs and chuck wagon slow-simmered baked beans.
“Patients at The Willows are really enjoying Bernie’s style of cooking and his ability to perfectly season and prepare their favorite dishes,” said Michelle Williams, director of dietary services at The Willows. “Now, it looks like the community agrees.”
"We take our food services very seriously,” said Tami Adams, executive director. “This was a great opportunity for our dietary staff to have fun as well. The winning recipes represent the high-quality dishes we serve our patients every day. We are excited to be recognized with Top Chef in such a prestigious competition."
Life Care Center of The Willows presented its winning recipes with a country-western theme. Associates decorated the serving tables in that style and wore cowboy hats as they dished the samples. Many judges and attendees returned to the booth for seconds and thirds after their initial tasting.
This year, Prompt Ambulance welcomed a $5 donation at the door for Taste of Care, with all proceeds benefiting Porter County Triad — a partnership among law enforcement groups, churches, advocacy groups, senior care facilities and others to address the needs of seniors in the county.