Photo by John Anderson
Jessi Cape (Head Judge):
Food editor of The Austin Chronicle
co-owner of former SoCo hot spot Snack Bar and the upcoming Bobo's Snack Bar in Cherrywood
co-owner of Güero's Taco Bar, and the daughter of Rob Lippincott, a longtime Hot Sauce judge and founding owner of Güero's
Sara Mardanbigi and Edgar Rico:
co-owners of upcoming Nixta Taqueria. Rico staged at Mexico City's Pujol and was chef de cuisine at Peached Tortilla's event space, Peached Social House, where he met Mardanbigi, who will serve as Nixta's operations director.
owner/chef of Da Slice, which features scratch artisan pizzas (including the original Chicken and Waffle Pizza) and fried whole chicken wings
owner/chef of Puli-Ra, a supper club and pop-up "dedicated to throwing dope dinner parties" with the Austin Winery
executive chef of ATX Cocina, an upscale Downtown restaurant offering modern Mexican cuisine, featuring heirloom masa and traditional dishes with a twist
Edgar and Christina Torres:
general/assistant managers of Mi Madre's; co-owners of School House Pub and Techo Mezcaleria & Agave Bar. Born in Saltillo, Coahuila Mexico, Edgar is the son of Mi Madre's owner, and he met Christina at the Culinary Institute of America in New York.
food editor of CultureMap Austin and San Antonio, and the former Food editor of The Austin Chronicle