Houston Chronicle, Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show partner to bring world-class chefs to Reliant Center

City's booming culinary scene a "perfect fit" for world-class cooking show

Jul 19, 2012, 12:17 ET from Houston Chronicle

HOUSTON, July 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Houston Chronicle has joined with the Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show (MCES) to present MetroCooking Houston, as announced today by Denise Medved, CEO and creator of the expo.

The 2012 MetroCooking Houston presented by Houston Chronicle will take place September 15-16 at Reliant Center. Highlights include appearances from Paula Deen, Jacques Pepin and Giada De Laurentiis; a Regional Cooking Stage honoring The James Beard Foundation with local chefs including Hugo Ortega, Kiran Verma, Jamie Zelko, Ronnie Killen, Michael Cordua and Rebecca Masson; and a shopping marketplace featuring hundreds of purveyors of specialty foods and entertainment necessities plus cooking demonstrations, tastings and hands-on workshops.

Through this partnership, Houston Chronicle will showcase its food and wine staff, such as James Beard Award-winning restaurant critic Alison Cook, food editor Greg Morago, Whine & Dine writer Syd Kearney, Flavor editor Diane Cowen and wine columnist Dale Robertson. The Chronicle also will leverage its marketing, advertising and promotions businesses to augment MCES's efforts to grow the show, now in its second year. Attendance at the 2011 Houston expo numbered nearly 11,000.

The Chronicle chose to partner with MCES because the show is a natural fit within Houston's booming culinary scene, according to Houston Chronicle President John T. O'Loughlin. "Houston's culinary marketplace is one of the most diverse and fastest growing in the country," O'Loughlin said. "In creating this multi-level partnership with MCES, we will help present a world-class food entertainment event for all of southeast Texas to enjoy, and we envision the event earning a reputation as the top show in the United States."

MCES was first held in 2006 in Washington, DC. The inaugural show attracted 100 exhibitors, 6,500 cooking and entertaining enthusiasts and more than 40 culinary and entertaining professionals presenting on various stages. Now in its seventh year, the DC show has grown to 420 exhibitors and sponsors and 23,000 attendees, prompting organizers to take the show to new cities. Last year's Houston debut was MCES's most successful launch to date.

"Our experience last year in bringing MetroCooking to Houston surpassed any of our expectations," Medved said. "Houston's vibrant food scene is a perfect fit for what we do – combine nationally known cooking personalities with locally favored chefs and specialty food and entertaining manufacturers all under one roof. We can't wait to get back to Houston."

Tickets, priced from $24.50 for general admission to the show floor with its marketplace and local chef and entertaining stages to $400 for a VIP experience, are available now at metrocookinghouston.com.

About the Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show

The Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show (MCES) is a two-day food-lover's event featuring hundreds of exhibitors, cooking demos, tastings, workshops, book signings and appearances by Food Network celebrities such as Paula Deen, Bobby Flay and Guy Fieri. With its first show in Washington, DC in 2001, MCES has expanded its national presence and takes place annually in three cities: DC, Houston and Dallas. MCES is owned and operated by The Tiny Kitchen, Inc.

About Houston Chronicle

The Houston Chronicle, the largest newspaper in Texas and the nation's sixth-largest newspaper, has evolved into a multi-media company publishing online and commercial print products, in English and Spanish, reaching specific audiences with unique delivery programs. In addition to the Houston Chronicle's 943,000 daily readers and 165 million readers on Sunday, Chron.com, the Chronicle's online site, averages nearly 89 million page views and 8.3 million unique visitors each month. The Houston Chronicle is owned by the Hearst Corporation.

Nicki Britton | Houston Chronicle | 713-362-7486 / 713-504-1207 | nicki.britton@chron.com
Jill Collins | Metropolitan Cooking & Entertaining Show | 703-716-0925 / 703-626-5797 | jill@jillcollinspr.com

SOURCE Houston Chronicle