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Herbig brothers, Chef Simeon are Kaua‘i Poke Fest celebrity judges

PO‘IPU — When doors to the Fourth annual Kaua‘i Poke Fest open at Koloa Landing Resort on June 8, the poke fest’s guest judges Nick and Nate Herbig of the Pittsburgh Steelers will be joined by celebrity judge Chef Sheldon Simeon of Lineage and Tiffany’s on Maui.

Proceeds from this year’s Kaua‘i Poke Fest will support the Hawai‘i Community Foundation Maui Strong Fund.

“We started the Kaua‘i Poke Fest as a way to bring our community together to celebrate Hawai‘i’s iconic dish with the Godfather of Poke, Chef Sam Choy, all while supporting our local organizations,” said Koloa Landing Resort General Manager Aaron Bambling. “We are honored to have Chef Sheldon from the Maui community join us for a fun event that supports Maui’s recovery from the recent wildfires.”

Competitors will be vying for the first place prize of a $2,000 Visa Gift Card, airfare and hotel accommodations for two to travel to Honolulu and be featured on Sam Choy’s “In the Kitchen” television show as a guest chef. There is also a two-night stay at Koloa Landing Resort in a two-bedroom villa and the winner’s name will be engraved on the Crystal Poke Bowl trophy that the winner gets to hold onto until Kaua‘i Poke Fest 2025.

Participating competitors will be provided poke grade ‘ahi, inclusion in the 2024 Kaua‘i Poke Fest cookbook, the opportunity to meet Chef Sam Choy and more. Dishes will be voted on by attendees and a panel of judges with the top three rated dishes earning prizes.

To date, new and returning professional and amateur chefs for the 2024 competition scheduled for June 8 include Grecrean Manuel, the 2023 Kaua‘i Poke Fest overall winner, and Taylor Sakimae, owner of Kaua‘i Poke Co., and the 2019 Kaua‘i Poke Fest overall winner.

Additional competitors include chefs representing The Beach House restaurant, Cabana Bar & Grill, Charbar Co Burgers & Sushi, Da Bald Guy from O‘ahu’s North Shore, the Grand Hyatt Kaua‘i Resort and Spa, Moa Moa Hawaiian Fish House at the Sheraton Kaua‘i Coconut Beach Resort, Nanea Restaurant & Bar at the Westin Princeville, the Outrigger Kaua‘i Beach Resort, Pineapple Express Kaua‘i, The Plantation House, Po‘ipu Poke Shack and more.

General and VIP tickets are available online at

Chef Simeon, born in Hilo, Hawai‘i Island, opened restaurants Tin Roof in Kahului, Maui, and Lineage in Wailea, Maui, that were named a James Beard Award semifinalist for “Best New Restaurant” in 2019. Chef Simeon took over Tiffany’s in Wailuku, Maui, in 2022 and competed in Seasons 10 and 15 of Bravo’s hit competition cooking show “Top Chef” where he won “Fan Favorite” in both seasons.
Source: The Garden Island

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