Team CINY Shines at Annual Gerard Molloy Memorial Culinary Competition

The Culinary Arts Center on the New Rochelle campus was abuzz with great energy and culinary creativity on Dec. 10 as the College hosted the 4th Annual Gerard Molloy Memorial Culinary Competition (GMMCC).

When the winners were announced, Team CINY, the College’s culinary competition team, earned an impressive 39 medals -- the single best outcome of any individual competition entered across the 13 years CINY has been competing.

The team took home 16 gold, 18 silver and 5 bronze medals, bringing the program’s medal total to a remarkable 1,096. 

Equally impressive? Many of our competitors were FYE students – new to Monroe, new to the culinary program, and very new to competing at the collegiate level. They could not make Frank Costantino more proud. He is the team’s head coach and the dean of the School of Hospitality Management that is home to the Culinary Institute of New York.

The top score of the day was earned by one of these new CINY students -- Melina Sosa. A Food and Finance High School graduate and C-CAP scholarship winner, Melina first made her mark at Monroe when she won CINY’s “America’s Best High School Chef Competition” last winter. 

CINY student Frank J. Costantino, Dean Costantino’s son, earned “best of show pastry and skills” honors. The younger Costantino was recently selected by the American Culinary Federation (ACF) to represent the United States next May in Santiago, Chile for the Global Young Chef’s challenge in the regional competition for the Americas. It is an incredible honor and a wonderful testament to Frank, Jr.’s culinary skills and creativity. We’ll be rooting for you, Frank!

In other exciting results from the GMMCC event, Vanessa Ruiz, winner of the pastry portion of last year’s “America’s Best High School Chef Competition,” earned two gold medals – one for pastry skills and the other in the cold composed desserts category.

The Gerard Molloy Memorial Culinary Competition includes a competition track for professionals. Two CINY graduates were among the participants. Jake Costantino earned “best of show / professional” honors and Chef Lay Alston, who famously appeared in the “Undercover Boss: Celebrity Edition” episode featuring acclaimed chef and global restauranteur Marcus Samuelsson and CINY, earned a professional gold medal. 

The Gerard Molloy Memorial Culinary Challenge is an ACF-sanctioned competition hosted by the Culinary Institute of New York at Monroe College. The competition, formerly called the Greater New York Culinary Challenge, was renamed in honor of Chef Gerard Molloy, a long time ACF member, judge, and member of the faculty at CINY, who passed away in February 2019. The competition started in 2004 and has been hosted in Monroe’s Culinary Arts Center since 2009.

The competition attracts promising students and seasoned chefs from the northeast region. It traditionally marks the beginning of Team CINY’s competition season, which runs from September until the national championships at the ACF national convention in mid-summer.

Congratulations to all the winners! Have a great season, Team CINY!