XX Caesar Salad Competition at Westin Galleria Gets Rowdy

Hail the real Caesar! (photo by Mark M. Hancock/Dallas Morning News)

According to several attendees of Sunday’s XX Caesar Salad Competition, the charity event ended with a quite a bang. SideDish reporter Andrew Chalk was leaving the Westin Galleria tonight when he heard emcee Scott Murray yelling from the Senate floor stage. “At first I thought it was the live auction and somebody had just made a big buy,” Chalk said. “Then I realized he was shouting abuse at some guy in the audience.”

I contacted AIWF rep Freda Ballas. “We did have some people complain about him [Murray] using the f-word,” Ballas said. Both Ballas and Chalk tell the same tale. Murray was onstage pulling names from the raffle bowl and announcing winners. You buy a ticket and a number is called. Simple. Tonight, a nice little girl put her hand in the bowl and pulled out a ticket and handed it to Murray. Instead of announcing a number, Murray read out a name.

Some dude near the stage yelled something to the effect of “This is rigged,” and Murray went nuts. From various reports Murray say words to the effect of: “If somebody thinks I have control over the tickets I pulled, you can meet me outside right now and I’ll give you a check for $500.” Meanwhile, Del Frisco’s chef, David Holben, was busy packing up his knives. He won the competition.

Somewhere, both Julius Caesar and Caesar Cardini are smiling. Holben’s victorious salad was an extra-garlic-and-anchovy version of Cardini’s original. Murray battled like a gladiator.


  • It. Was. Something! Had just turned off my camera, too… Nuts…

  • Witness

    At first I thought it was a joke. Then the f word and bickering. Scott stormed out of the event with his wife. It was really weird.

  • Witness

    What I saw were people questioning
    Scott’s integrity and honesty then a man harassing his wife as they were leaving. Like any man would do, Scott defended both and in frustration that’s when he used the f-word, not during the event on the microphone. Sad that a couple of sore raffle losers had to ruin a nice event.

  • Pingback: Scott Murray Goes Unhinged | FrontBurner()

  • Tim


  • Uppercase Matt

    Was the “rigged” comment serious or in jest? I was once at an event at the Hunt/Amend place where there was a raffle, and won two items and collected a third for a colleague that left early and gave me his tickets — there were several people joking about it being rigged, but no one was serious.

  • Scott’s Hair

    Will you bring me back to 1982? Those we’re the good ‘ol days, eh?

  • I’ll bet those complainers were with the Occupy Galleria group.

  • MSutton

    I fear I may have been part of the problem. When the time came for the raffle I was looking at my tickets, waiting for the numbers, but, instead of numbers, Scott called out a name. Confused, I went to the raffle table for an explanation. How could anyone know the name when the numbers had not even been announced, was my question. There was a legitimate answer, but I uttered “fishy”. I went back to my table to say my goodbyes and heard part of Scott’s tirade. Then, when leaving, saw him storming out. I felt terrible about it. Scott had done a great job all through the event. I never guessed my question would be conveyed to him and, certainly, I did not hold him responsible. Reading this blog has made me feel a little better since I’ve been informed that someone yelled about it being rigged. That wasn’t me.
    The competition was very good. I voted for Doug Brown. His combination of spicy and sweet was complex and refreshingly new. But all were good and Scott did a fine job of encouraging and promoting each chef.

  • Witness

    Scott did a fabulous job as always for CHARITY ! Why the big deal about a drunk heckler who should have been thrown out of the event ! Scott, keep up the good work. We love you !

  • The American Institute of Wine and Food, Dallas/Ft.Worth Chapter, appreciates the time, energy and support Scott Murray has given to our annual fundraiser over the years. Scott Murray has volunteered to be our emcee for Caesar for 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011.