SoBe Wine and Food Fest regular Aaron Sanchez gears up for fall

Despite the blood, sweat and tears (literally!) Food Network’s Chopped keeps churning along. One of the main judges, Latin chef Aarón Sanchez, thinks he knows why. “We have a conclusion. You’re not waiting for six weeks to see who America’s next knucklehead is,’’ he says, laughing.

“After 22 minutes [with commercials], someone’s walking out the door with $10,000. That’s instant gratification.” Despite the odd concoctions that have been laid out at the table, the New York restaurateur (Centrico) swears he has never gotten ill. “At this point, I have a stomach of steel. I eat just about everything,” he says, adding: “There’s stuff we won’t touch because a cook had sweat or bled on it.”

OK, onto more appetizing topics….Sanchez has teamed up with popchips, which have come out with tortilla chips, for Sunday football tailgating parties.

Think: Grilled Chicken Cemitas and Garlic-Chipotle Love with salsa tortilla popchips and Goose Island 312; Ceviche with the chili limón version and Bud Light; Crab Dip with ranch style and Stella; and All-Beef Chile Colorado with nacho cheese.

We can hear the crunching already.

For more ideas go to

Info on what other cool stuff you can do, go to


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