Tack on another major accomplishment to Buffalo chef Mike Andrzejewski's decorated culinary career.
The chef-owner of SeaBar and Cantina Loco competed on The Food Network's "Beat Bobby Flay," taking down Washington, D.C.-based rival Anthony Nelson and then conquering Iron Chef Flay in an episode calling "Going Loco."
After dispatching of Nelson in the first round, Andrzejewski chose his signature Loco Moco (a half-pound of beef, fried rice, eggs and gravy, served in a delightful heap, $14) - a staple at his Ellicott Street restaurant - to challenge the show's star, and Flay simply could not match the quality. (Flay has mentioned that Asian-inspired dishes are his weakness, and the Buffalo challenger took full advantage).
The Food Network's introduction of Chef Andrzejewski shined the spotlight playfully on the local chef's artificial left leg, a result of an injury suffered in a motorcycle accident.
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The SeaBar chef has also represented Buffalo at the Taste of the NFL, offering a bite from his restaurant at the annual party held the night before the Super Bowl. Past bites have included the popular beef on weck sushi rolls and pork shumai.
The Ellicott Street sushi eatery - with a twist of Asian-American fusion - was one of six restaurants to have earned a perfect 10 plates from News food editor Andrew Galarneau. Mike A's at the Lafayette also earned a perfect score, but has since closed.
Andrzejewski was also responsible for helping start Tappo, the Italian restaurant at 338 Ellicott Street.
This 1998 profile, below, of Chef Andrzejewski delves into his culinary background, which included no formal training and a stint at long-standing Oliver's, a breeding ground for some of Buffalo's best chefs.