26 August 2015 Attention all foodies! It’s time to get a spring in your step and hop on over to The Food Show Wellington (4-6 September)! There’s no better time to get out of the cold and feel inspired by cuisine that will truly knock your socks off! With an incredible chef line-up and hundreds of new things to try and buy, how could you say no?
Included in the price of your ticket is entry to the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre, where you can get your creative juices flowing and fire up your inner chef. It’s here you’ll find the likes of Chelsea Winter, Nadia Lim, Simon Gault, Annabelle White, Ben Bayly, Ray McVinnie, Kyle Street and Karena & Kasey Bird with world class cooking demos. Expand your culinary skills with ideas you’ll be itching to recreate at home! Be Easily Entertained with Classic French Cooking with a Twist or let Nadia tame guilty favourites with Naughty Turned Nice. Whatever your palette, you’re sure to fall in love and go home inspired. Plus, each recipe is available to take home and matched to a Waipara wine, which you can purchase at the show. Once you’ve moved on from the excitement of the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre, head on over to The Healthy Hub, where you can immerse yourself in wellness-enhancing products and services, and healthy alternatives for the body and mind. You’ll be sure to see products free from gluten, dairy, refined sugar, preservatives and chemical additives as well as raw foods, wholefoods and superfoods! Are you feeling healthier already? Once you have re-fuelled, you can explore exciting new food, drinks, kitchenware, and more from more than 150 stalls covering everything from the most indulgent chocolate stands to the latest in health trends. Buy your tickets online to avoid queues, take advantage of early bird online special prices for general admission and go in the draw to win a foodie 6-night escape in Nelson – valued at $5,000. The Food Show is on from Friday 4th – Sunday 6th September. Early bird tickets start at $23 for adults, $15 for under 12s, while under 5s are free. Book online at www.foodshow.co.nz
Friendly trans-Tasman rivalry all part of charity dinner
Nic Watt – Chef Restaurateur at Federal Street's MASU at SKYCITY Auckland. Photo by Michael-Bradley
24 August 2015 Variety – The Children’s Charity and SKYCITY Auckland are thrilled to present ‘SKYCITY Variety of Chefs’ on Saturday September 5, 2015. This evening of fine food and wine will see two Australasian culinary greats cook for a cause in a battle for guests taste buds.
Inspired by the 100th anniversary of ANZAC, this much loved event will feature award winning chefs Adam D'Sylva - Executive Chef at Coda and Tonka in Melbourne and Nic Watt – Chef Restaurateur at Federal Street's MASU at SKYCITY Auckland. The chefs are collaborating on a specially designed menu with wine matches, showcasing the very best of Australian and New Zealand cuisine to treat 350 guests. Proceeds from the event will go towards Variety’s Kiwi Kid Sponsorship programme, which provides a disadvantaged local child with the basics that their family is unable to afford like warm bedding and clothing, home basics, school books and extra-curricular activities such as school camp. Lorraine Taylor, CEO of Variety – The Children’s Charity says the event, now in its third year, is the highlight of the charity’s event calendar: “We are thrilled to have such high calibre chefs presenting the menu this year. Nic Watt and Adam D’Sylva are both renowned for their innovative menus. The night will present a rare treat for our guests who’ll get a chance to sample from two of the greats,” says Ms Taylor. Both chefs promise signature flavours from their award winning restaurants and are looking forward to a touch of friendly rivalry in the kitchen. Adam D’Sylva, who has won The Age Good Food Hat award six years running, says “I always love a bit of healthy competition and camaraderie. At the end of the day we are both chefs who are able to do what we love - to cook, and to help kids in need and have an effect on people’s lives.” In his second year supporting the event, Nic Watt says diners should be ready for a night to remember: “We can’t really let the cat out of the bag yet, but I can say that it will be a sharing menu that both Adam and I have designed to showcase the very best of MASU, Coda and Tonka restaurants. There’s a little ANZAC competitiveness and collaboration on the dessert. Given that Australia and New Zealand don’t really have a deep culinary history, we have the advantage of being able to draw from other regions that are close to home. South East Asia springs to mind...” Friendly Trans-Tasman rivalry will also flavour the evening’s entertainment with local performances blended with talent from across the ditch. MCs for the evening will be Jesse Mulligan to represent New Zealand and Australian television presenter and Variety Ambassador Karen Ledbury. Jesse Mulligan is looking forward to taking a break from food critic duties for the evening, saying for him, the evening will be special because: “I can just enjoy it instead of having to review it afterwards! I've had some of my favourite Auckland meals at MASU, and have heard amazing things about Adam so coming along was really a no-brainer.” SKYCITY Auckland General Manager Marketing Julie Garlick says SKYCITY is proud to support Variety for the third consecutive year via the event. “Variety’s Kiwi Kid Sponsorship programme makes a real, tangible difference for children living in deprivation in New Zealand. Once again it is a pleasure to present this unique dining experience for such a worthy cause,” says Ms Garlick. Each course will be matched with a premium wine generously donated by Dhall and Nash fine wines. For more information or to purchase tickets please visit www.variety.org.nz or phone (09) 520 4111
Great Kiwi Morning Tea launches month-long campaign
14 August 2015 Kiwis need our help. Unmanaged kiwi populations are estimated to be declining at a rate of 2% per annum. Without management we lose around 27 kiwi each week. To keep them alive for future generations, we need to act now.
Save Kiwi Month starts on 1 October and the inaugural national fundraising initiative, the Great Kiwi Morning Tea is being held on Friday 16 October. You can do your bit to help our precious kiwi. Just get together with family, friends, colleagues, neighbours or complete strangers and hold a classic Kiwi morning tea. Splurge on Kiwi classics like lamingtons, caramel slice, sausage rolls, lolly cake, and asparagus rolls and ask your guests to make a donation towards saving our national treasure. Just $100 is enough to save one kiwi by controlling predators across its habitat for an entire year. Visit www.kiwisforkiwi.org and click on the Great Kiwi Morning Tea icon to register and receive your pack which contains instructions for a successful event, sample invite, promotional materials, recipes and a fun Kiwi Quiz. Register now and put the date in your diary.
Cakers reveal grand creations
13 August 2015 It was a sweet spectacle of fashion and cake last night at the launch of Art Of Cake 2015 at Shore City, Auckland. This year’s finalists and their astonishing works of edible art have now been revealed.
Four weeks and hundreds of hours later, five of Auckland’s top bespoke caker’s unveiled their grand creations, each inspired by the vision of a celebrated personality within the fashion and design scene. Clare Grove, FOUREYES, Kylie Cooke and LeeAnn Yare each created a mood board to inspire the finalists. The fifth mood board was created by Shore City’s official charity, Cure Kids.
We are proud to announce this year’s finalists, all competing for the public vote to be crowned this year's winner: Bake-a-boo - www.bakeaboo.com Cherry Cake Company – www.cherrycake.nz For Heaven’s Cake - www.forheavenscake.co.nz Cake Collective - www.eat-cake.co.nz
Back to defend their title after winning Art of Cake in 2013 and 2014: Sweet Bites Cakes - www.sweetbitescakes.co.nz
Oriental Gardens by Sweet Bites Cakes
Sondra Vicelich from Sweet Bites Cakes has been awarded the Art of Cake title for the last two years running, with last year’s winning cake ‘Shine Bright’ setting the bar high for future entries. This year Sondra and her team had the pleasure of taking inspiration from Clare Grove’s ‘Oriental Gardens’ mood board to create a cake that features an array of Japanese fans delicately tucked between hand painted blossoms and sugar flowers, draped with sugar lace and fondant bows - all balancing on fondant shoes to die for!
A Monochromatic Statement by For Heaven’s Cake
Never one to back down from a challenge, For Heaven’s Cake’s Jenny Nicholls loves to step outside the box and incorporate her passion for sculpture into her cakes. Jenny’s cake is based on the FOUREYES ‘A Monochromatic Statement’ mood board and her striking submission is an eclectic ode to fashion and art. Ribboned with free hand piping, this cake showcases elements that go into creating clothing, from the fondant fabric, the cotton reel spool layer, all the way to the white piped lace – this cake is definitely a statement.
The Bold and The Beautiful by Cake Collective
Cake Collective is a team of three, Kerry Morris, Joanne Tan and Nina Blackburn who have banded together to try their hand at winning the Art of Cake 2015 title. This is Kerry’s second year as a finalist in the Art of Cake competition, with her ‘Wild Things’ submission from last year’s competition wowing crowds. This year Cake Collective has taken on ‘The Bold and The Beautiful’ mood board created by notable stylist Kylie Cooke. Their cake is a five-layer spectacle of all things feminine. From ruffles to florals, Cake Collective has taken texture to the next level with this cake by using fondant fabric techniques, hand made pearls, wafer paper flowers with sculpted hats and handbags to match.
Dark Romance by Bake-a-boo
Elina Prawito from Bake-a-boo has always loved baking, but was only truly inspired to take it on as a career when she made her first two-tiered, buttercream frosted cake with fondant décor for her son’s first birthday eight years ago. Elina has taken the juxtaposition of soft, romantic florals grown out of moody, dramatic tones directly from LeeAnn Yare’s ‘Dark Romance’ mood board and paired it with metallic accents to create a Baroque-esque cake that is a work of art in itself.
Pop Couture by Cherry Cake Company
Cherry Cake Company’s Trudy Nicholls and Kelley Tahitahi’s super powers lie in the art of crafting three-dimensional cakes, hand painting and sugar work – skills that they have used to perfectly bring to life the spirit of Cure Kids ‘Pop Couture’ mood board. Featuring Gotham City’s one and only vigilante donning a sweet surprise, Cherry Cake Company have encapsulated the courageous spirit of the Kiwi children that Cure Kids help every day and paired it with iconic pop culture references to create something that kids and parents alike will love.
The five finalists cakes will be displayed on level one in the Shore City mall in Takapuna for the next three weeks, with the winner announced on Thursday 27th August 2015. The winner will be decided entirely by public vote. Spending $5 or more at Shore City earns a voting token, as well as an entry to be in to win a $500 Shore City Gift Card or 1 of 10 year-long subscriptions to Taste magazine. Spending $25 or more to receive 2 tokens, or $50 or more for 3 tokens – voting never tasted so sweet! Shore City, Takapuna www.shore-city.co.nz/category/art-of-cake
Competition introduces first National Sausage Day
7 August 2015 For the first time, the annual Devro New Zealand Sausage Competition will culminate in a National Sausage Day, a nationwide celebration of the ubiquitous Kiwi banger - a kiwi summer icon. With the announcement of the nation’s best sausages the day prior on October 22, National Sausage Day is the time for New Zealand to bring in the summer with the country’s best sausages.
Paddy Kennedy, from Allenton Meat Centre in Ashburton, was the 2014 Supreme Sausage Award winner producing a beef and blue cheese sausage that wowed the judges and continues to impress consumers. “Winning the Devro New Zealand Sausage Competition was the best form of advertising for our business which money just can’t buy,” said Paddy. “Coming up 12 months after the win we are still making 10 times more sausages than we were prior to the competition,” he said. Long-time Head judge Kerry Tyack says he is delighted to be returning to the role and relishes the opportunity to discover what new taste combinations are on offer in 2015. “I never tire of this amazing competition. Every year there are improvements, changes and innovations. There can be no doubt, Kiwis have conquered the art of creating great sausages and I am excited to renew my acquaintance with people who are passionate and knowledgeable about food and their craft in particular. “The timing of the event is perfect. It kick starts the summer season by celebrating a Kiwi barbecue icon. “Our summers are all about eating great food, and sausages are a big part of that,” says Tyack. In previous years the competition has attracted more than 450 entries covering 11 categories. These include traditional beef, traditional pork, poultry, saveloys, cocktails, polony’s, pre-cooked, flavoured, traditional flavoured, rounds, continental fresh, continental ready-to-eat and gourmet. Sausages are assessed by at least two judges on visual appeal, aroma, flavour, texture, shrinkage and composition by a team of more than 30 judges a combination of butchers, industry experts, food writers and chefs. The competition is supported by Devro, Kerry Ingredients and Alto Packaging.
Fonterra support for Kiwi Culinary Olympic team
7 August 2015 The team of New Zealand chefs competing in next year’s Culinary Olympics in Erfurt, Germany, will have the full support of global dairy giant Fonterra. The competition, involving 2000 chefs from 40 countries around the world, will mark the first time a New Zealand team has entered the competition since 1988.
Grant Watson, Director of Global Foodservice – Fonterra, says New Zealand has phenomenal culinary talent and it is well and truly time this was showcased to the world after not having competed for 28 years. “We have some amazing chefs in this country working with unique and innovative techniques and fabulous, fresh ingredients. The Culinary Olympics will not only give us the opportunity to compete on the world stage but show the world the talent we have here in New Zealand and to showcase our amazing ingredients. “The New Zealand culinary world has changed so much over the past 28 years, and so has our cuisine. We now have star chefs and top rated restaurants which are as good as anywhere on the planet.” He says Fonterra’s focus on innovation, the best quality natural ingredients and high quality made working with the Culinary Olympics team an ideal match. In the lead up to next year’s Olympics, the NZChefs team will cook at a series of events / dinners around the country - giving Kiwis the opportunity to taste the dishes and the chefs the chance to hone recipes and their teamwork. These events will also involve workshops for local chefs to inspire them to become involved in culinary competitions. “We want everyone in the country to have the opportunity to experience some of our best culinary offerings and ingredients but also for local chefs to learn from the expertise of chefs in the NZChefs Fonterra Culinary Olympics team about what culinary competitions are about and how they can make them better chefs. Hopefully the team will also inspire some of amazing young chefs we have coming through to take their skills and New Zealand’s amazing ingredients to the 2020 Culinary Olympics.” The team to take on the culinary world includes a mix of experienced competition chefs with some exciting new talent. It comprises: Corey Hume of Blanket Bay (Queenstown), Darren Wright of Chillingworth Road (Christchurch), William Mordido of Chiko’s (Auckland), Mark Sycamore of Tequila Mockingbird (Christchurch), Jie Min Aw of AUT School of Hospitality & Tourism (Auckland), and Ken O’Donnell of Bracken Restaurant (Dunedin).
Aussie chefs succeed in Global Chefs Challenge
7 August 2015 An Australian trio has taken out top honours in the International Pacific Rim Global Chefs competitions held in Auckland recently. Chefs Matthew Weller, Jenni Key and Chris Malone beat competitors from New Zealand, Fiji, Vanuatu and Guam for the respective Global Chef, Global Pastry Chef and Hans Bueschkens Young Chef titles.
All three will travel to Greece in September 2016 to represent the Pacific Rim at the International WACS World Chefs Congress. There they will compete against twenty teams from seven different regions for the world title. Joining them will be Global Chef ‘Wild Card’ winner Mark Sycamore from New Zealand. In other results from the NZChefs National Salon Auckland Chef, Himanshu Shaun Tyagi from Chikos Restaurant took out top honours, winning the Chef of the Year title. Himanshu follows in the footsteps of 2014 Chef of the Year winner and fellow Chikos colleague, William Mordido. The Curry Cup proved to be the most popular event with this year’s Salon audience. Visitors who made a gold coin donation to Ronald McDonald house were able to sample the curries and vote in the ‘People’s Choice Award for their favourite. The inaugural ‘Senior Lifestyle Cuisines’ competition had the highest number of chefs entered, reflecting the changing nature of New Zealand’s population. Also in its first year, was Kids Can Cook, a competition for year one to eight students with the goal of encouraging children into the kitchen to learn to cook and eat well. It was such a success that NZChefs plans to roll out the competition around the country via its eight regional branch offices in 2016. Remuera Intermediate’s Thomas Murray, won gold and the Kids Can Cook first prize with a rack of lamb dish that the judges described as being “cooked to perfection”.
TOP NZ CULINARY & HOSPITALITY AWARD WINNERS NZ Chef of the Year Himanshu Shaun Tyagi, Chikos Restaurant Commis Chef of the Year Joelle Snook, Aoraki Polytechnic / Fusion Restaurant Pastry Chef of the Year Su Jung Anita Chung, Pullman Hotel Service IQ Apprentice of the Year Peter Dann, Copthorne Hotel Bartender of the Year Pedrag Jonahovic, NZMA Service Professional of the Year Meng Ly, Pullman Hotel Barista of the Year Leanne Waite, Cerebos Food Service Training Establishment of the Year NZMA, part of the ACG Tertiary & Careers Group Secondary School Excellence Award St Johns College, Hastings
Rotorua restaurant reaches Stratosfare
7 August 2015 No fewer than five Stratosfare Restaurant and Bar staff took medals at the NZChefs National Salon. The team travelled home with 12 medals and a trophy after competing in a variety of cooking, bartending and table service challenges.
Skyline Rotorua general manager, Bruce Thomasen, says the event was a great way for the team to demonstrate their skills and be recognised for their excellence. “We have an amazing team here at Stratosfare who work relentlessly to serve their best to our visitors every day and the Salon served as a celebration of their talent.” Among the Stratosfare winners, were Prithviraj Shetty and Kunal Sharmar who each took home a gold medal and category win. Shetty won the Mystery Box Table Setting Challenge, while Mr Sharmar won the Wine and Beverage Service Challenge as well as taking home the Passionberry Cocktail Cup, with a first-class silver in the Mystery Box Challenge. It was a close race between the two Stratosfare bartenders, with Mr Shetty taking runner up to Mr Sharmar in the Wine and Beverage Service Challenge and equalling him in the Classic Cocktail Challenge, where they both claimed bronze. Mr Sharmar also went on to win silver in the Innovative Cocktail Challenge. Mr Sharmar is deeply passionate about mixology and has been traveling the world for 13 years practicing the art and winning a number of awards, including Outstanding Bartender at the 2015 Rotorua Hospitality Awards. “I work really hard to make not only Stratosfare proud of the work I do, but to also make Rotorua proud. “One of the cocktails I made at the competition was a Hangi Masala, and it served as a tribute to New Zealand and India – where I’m originally from. Kiwis are so respectful of my talent and my culture, they truly appreciate what I do and I wanted to capture this in a drink. These awards follow Stratosfare’s recent success at the 2015 Rotorua Hospitality Awards, where they won Outstanding Restaurant, Outstanding Waiter, Outstanding Bartender and Best Emerging Chef.
Taste and learn at Wine and Food Celebration
Bob Campbell MW
Alfredo Icedo Romero
5 August 2015 Join the New Zealand School of Food and Wine in September for a unique wine and food experience. Wine and Food Celebration takes place from September 13-15 at New Zealand School of Food and Wine in Auckland Viaduct. On 13 September, it's a great chance for you to sample some mouthwatering food and ingredients from an exciting line up of local artisan food producers. You can also get hands on with interactive cooking masterclasses. On 13 & 14 September, New Zealand Wine Room features a showcase of wines from around the country. You will find a selection of outstanding winegrowers, many of them certified organic, pouring their wines. Masters of Wine Bob Campbell will host "walkabouts" during the tasting sessions and you can join him as he wander the room and discuss the characteristics that make wine special. From Italy we have wines from the famous regions such as Piemonte, Valpolicella and Chianti. Discover both classic and unusual grape varieties and styles of wine that are refreshing to taste while listen to Joelle Thomson to talk about the exciting world of Italian wines. Enjoy free cooking demonstrations with Stefan Lötcher and Philippe Meyer exploring how to ferment foods at home, smoke fish and make delicious sourdough bread. Discover more about how your palate works and what appeals to you with Celia Hay. Tuesday 15 September, it's a day all about coffee. Steve Barrett and BK Kang will present coffee cupping with single origin coffees from countries such as Ethiopia, Indonesia and Guatemala. This is followed by roasting and brewing workshop . For those working in hospitality we have three competitions running during W&F, the New Zealand Sommelier of the Year, Junior Sommelier of the Year & the Young New Zealand Wine Professional of the Year. Cameron Douglas, New Zealand's Master Sommelier, will oversee the competitions to be run on 13 & 14 September. This is an opportunity to challenge and recognise those who excel in professional wine service and at the same time build confidence in new talent. For more information contact email@example.com
Competition proves you're never too old to eat well
5 August 2015 Cuisine for seniors living in aged care facilities came under the spotlight in Auckland at the NZChefs National Salon 2015. The inaugural Senior Lifestyle Cuisine cooking competition showcased the culinary skills of 16 chef competitors who currently work in the aged care sector. Event Organiser Pip Duncan said competitors had just 75 minutes to prepare and serve six covers of a main dish. “Three portions also had to be served in a soft minced format which is an important requirement in aged care facilities, due to swallowing difficulties encountered by many seniors.” Judges assessed the dishes against a set criteria including: presentation of food; taste and texture; control of cooking process; professional practice and preparation. The overall winner was Rodney Phillips of Elderslea Rest Home in Upper Hutt, Oceania Healthcare. Second place getter was Deborah Dillon of Atawhai Lifestyle Taradale, Oceania Healthcare, while Avril Grant from Charles Fleming, Ryman Healthcare in Waikanae secured third place at the event. Pip said the focus on nutrition for seniors would only continue to grow, given New Zealand’s aging population. “Government statisticians are projecting an increase in those aged 65 years and over to reach the 1 million mark in the late 2020s at which point this group will outnumber children. “Events like this will help to inject innovation and fresh thinking into aged care nutrition. This is an exciting field with fresh frontiers to be explored, in terms of dietary factors and solutions for this age group and an expected upsurge in job opportunities in this field.” Sponsors of the Senior Lifestyle Cuisine event included Nestlé Professional, Bidvest, vegetables.co.nz and Choice Catering Equipment.
4 August 2015 A unique 2-day gathering being organised for this September provides an opportunity for Kiwi food and beverage professionals to explore just what makes their industry so successful. Spearheading the Hospitality Summitat Auckland Museum on 13 September is the highly regarded Larry Nadeau, maitre d’ par excellence, from the US. The two-day Hospitality Summit, the second organised by the Restaurant Association of New Zealand features key insights for the industry, packaged in quick-fire sessions aimed to give practical tools that delegates can take away and implement in their business. CEO Marisa Bidois says it’s an even designed to deliver a shot in the arm for the industry. “The summit brings together members from all over NZ and puts them in touch with a panel of industry professionals from around the country and overseas. Topics such as trends in the industry, business insights and operational excellence are key to the success of our members’ businesses. “Events like this help our members to achieve the edge they need to be at the top of their game in a market that is increasingly challenging.” Topics on the menu during include an address on Operational Excellence and an Evolve or Die panel discussion featuring Nadeau, Wilson and Clooney’s Tony Stewart moderated by Don Fletcher. Other discussion points include E.R. Employment Rescue, a panel discussion titled Inspire Me, principles of Gastronomy and Staff Retention and Recruitment Strategies. Daniel Wilson, ex-pat Kiwi chef and partner in Melbourne’s Huxtable and Huxtaburger also features on the agenda participating in educational panel discussions. “Last time Larry Nadeau was in NZ he spoke to sell-out crowds giving us valuable insights into our industry. Daniel Wilson’s style and passion for food is reflected in the critical and popular success of his Melbourne establishments,” Ms Bidois says. But it’s not just a talkfest. On the first evening there will be the Feast by Famous Chefsblack tie dinner and awards featuring four well known chefs – including Wilson – presenting a four course feast matched with boutique beer and New Zealand wines. Cooking this year are Jinu Abraham who is executive chef at Heritage Auckland, Orphans Kitchen head chef and owner Tom Hishon, Catherine Adams who is pastry chef at Wellington’s Whitebait. The following day on Sunday 14 September further presentations are followed by self-guided tours of successful establishments and businesses, a butchery tutorial, tasting of signature dishes and behind the scenes operational tours.
Ticket prices are: · 2 Day Summit: Restaurant Association members 1 Day - $100 / 2 days $170 OR Non Members 1 Day - $170 / 2 days $340 (one day summit prices also available) · 2 Day Summit including Feast by Famous Chefs dinner and awards: Restaurant Association members $258 / Non Members $531 · Feast By Famous Chefs dinner and awards: Restaurant Association members $120 / Non Members $250
For details and to book tickets please click HERE or phone 0800 737 827
Culinary trainees feel the heat and reap the rewards
4 August 2015 The Culinary Institute of New Zealand scooped top spot in the City & Guilds New Zealand Team Skills competition, prevailing over six other teams of trainee chefs and restaurant service staff from industry training establishments and hotels to cook and serve a three course meal to the panel of judges and guests The competition, which is part of NZ Chefs National Salon, saw the Culinary Institute of New Zealand team retains the most marks overall from the three categories: kitchen work, tasting of the dishes and all elements of the restaurant Service. The team comprising chefs, Chelsea Johnston and Tracy Todd and server, Daniel Alzate Echeverri wowed the judges with their three course menu of: Entrée: Puhoi Valley Kaipara Wash Rind Cheese with beetroot, filo and herb olive oil (matched with Single Vineyard Nelson Pinot Rosé 2014) Main: roasted Cervena Venison wrapped in tamarillo with smoked potato, savoy cabbage, baby carrots, rocket puree and jus (matched with Marsden Estate Tempranillo 2014) Dessert: Peanut crème with sour dough cocoa soil, dark chocolate, black currant and raspberry caviar, berry foam and gel
Head judge, Mark Wylie, General Manager of Cater Plus said the calibre of all students was a credit to their trainers and coaches but the Culinary Institute of New Zealand team stood out for their innovative and professional performance. “Their dishes were innovative and contemporary and were to such an impressive standard that they could have been served in a top restaurant.” Culinary Institute of New Zealand’s Head Tutor, Jon Sefton, said it was wonderful to see his team get recognition for all their hard work. “We have been training since March, practicing over and over again, tweaking and refining and we pulled a lot of late nights. The team have been hugely enthusiastic and dedicated so it is great that they have been rewarded for all their hard work. “ The Institute’s team captain, Mat Fulton, continued, “This has been a massive achievement for the students and they are all the better chefs for it. It has really helped solidify the teachings and given them the confidence to know they are entering the industry in great form.” The Culinary Institute of New Zealand team also collected the Innovation Award which was given for creative use of Bidvest Smart Choice Bake Your Own Sour Dough bread in a dessert. Their dessert, Peanut Butter Crème featured a novel Soil made from the sour dough bread which was toasted, covered with a cocoa, salt and sugar mix, coated with butter and baked before being presented as cocoa soil. They were awarded a Bidvest Innovation Award Trophy and a Bidvest $200 gift voucher.
The team were awarded the Training Team of the Year trophy and a prize package valued at over $7000. Each of the three team members received $1000 cash, FÖRJE cookware valued at over $400 and a gift box of Barker’s products. The training establishment received $1000 Bidvest voucher, a $500 voucher from Choice Catering Equipment Ltd and the Team Manager received $1000 cash and a selection of food books valued at over $500. The team of judges, led by Mark Wylie, General Manager, Cater Plus included Des Harris - Executive Chef, Clooney; Alan Brown - Chef/Tutor at AUT; Chetan Pangam - Executive Chef at Copthorne Hotel, Wellington; John Snowball - F&B Manager at Compass, Dunedin; Birgit Ehlers-Hoeps - World Skills Trainer and Tony Kessler – Academic Manager, Food and Beverage, Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology. City & Guilds New Zealand Team Skills is sponsored by Bidvest, vegetables.co.nz, Puhoi Valley, Smart Choice, Choice Catering Equipment, Cervena, Barkers Professional and Epicurean Cookbooks and supported by Culinary Arts Development Trust
Shaken’ Sharma solves cocktail mystery
4 August 2015 Skyline Rotorua barman, Kunal Sharma, has won the coveted Cocktail Mystery Box competition at the national Culinary Salon Competitions. His winning cocktail "Exotic Nectar" using mystery ingredients revealed to the competitors only moments before the competition clock started, combined Passionberry, Tequila and Lychee Liqueur shaken and strained over ice into a crystal tumbler and garnished with lemon wedge. Competitors had just 15 minutes to prepare, produce and present two servings of a cocktail using mystery box products which included new NZ liquor product Passionberry Strawberry Cocktail. Contestants were judged on a strict range of criteria that included methodology, choice of ingredients, final presentation and garnish as well as taste. The national competitions attracted more than 450 of NZ's finest bartenders, hospitality staff and industry trained chefs who competed in a series of challenges to create world class culinary dishes and cocktails.
4 August 2015 An all-woman team comprising two chefs and a waiter from the Western Institute of Technology Taranaki (WITT) has taken out the top award in the prestigious 2015 Nestlé Toque d’Or culinary competition. Culinary students Abbey Warner and Nerys Whelan proved to be champs in the kitchen, while front of house competitor Genevieve Lysaght dazzled diners. Abbey and Nerys battled it out against 22 other top culinary students from around the country to create their award-winning three course menu which comprised a starter of seared Akaroa salmon with Asian greens, followed by a main of oven roasted New Zealand beef sirloin with butternut velvet, glazed baby fennel and turnip, oxtail and onion hotpot with smoked whiskey jus. The menu concluded with a chocolate and beetroot brownie dessert. Out front, Genevieve served up the dishes to special guests dining at the event. The pressure was on throughout the three hour live kitchen cook off, as the team fought against the clock and scrutiny of top industry judges. Any slip up by competitors was duly noted by the judges and marked as lost points. The panel of judges was led by high profile chef and leading culinary figure Darren Wright. Competing teams were marked against WorldChefs International Judging Standards which include food preparation, presentation, taste and service. This is the first time that the top award has gone to the Taranaki region. The event which has been running for 25 years is a firm fixture on the culinary calendar and is hotly contested by the country’s leading hospitality institutes. Abbey said she and her team mates were elated to have won the competition, after having given up so much and trained so hard for the event. “We put in months of training in the lead up to the event, juggling work and study commitments just to compete. That all paid off on the day, with a menu and service delivery that scored us top marks.” WITT Hospitality Faculty Leader Angela Ferguson who was the team’s manager and kitchen trainer said she was thrilled that they had won. “Gaining top ranking in such a prestigious competition as Nestlé Toque d’Or is a major achievement. It’s testimony to the dedication and commitment of the team and their single-minded focus to win. The sky is the limit now for these students, with rewarding careers firmly in their reach,” Angela said. “While the competition was intense on the day, the students kept their cool to ultimately outperform the very best from around the country. To have helped our students to stand out from the rest is a huge victory for WITT. It will further cement the institute’s reputation within the hospitality industry and clearly stamp Taranaki as a top education destination for people looking to pursue a culinary or restaurant service career.” Event organiser and New Zealand Chefs Association President Graham Hawkes said Nestlé Toque d’Or challenges competitors to ‘dig deep’ and achieve great results. “There’s simply no room for error and teams have to be focussed and in top form on the day. Aside from the competitive element, the event also gives the students an opportunity to demonstrate their skills in front of some of the country’s most highly-regarded culinary professionals which often leads to work opportunities.” A special award sponsored by Moffat that recognises innovative use of Nestlé Professional products across a team’s menu, went to the Central Campus of Otago Polytechnic. This year was the 25th anniversary of Nestlé Toque d’Or which is New Zealand’s longest running and most prestigious student cookery and food service event. Aside from New Zealand, it is also held in 17 other countries around the world and has launched the careers of world-famous chefs including Jamie Oliver. Sponsors of this year’s event were: Nestlé Professional, Beef + Lamb New Zealand, vegetables.co.nz, Akaroa Salmon, House of Knives and Moffat.
Medal Results Central Campus of Otago Polytechnic Culinary Silver Service Silver North Shore International Academy Culinary Silver Service Bronze Aoraki Polytechnic Culinary Silver Service Bronze Bay of Plenty Polytechnic Culinary Silver Service Silver Christchurch Polytechnic Insitute of Technology Culinary Silver Service Gold Auckland University of Techonology Culinary Silver Service Silver Eastern Institute of Technology Culinary Bronze Service Bronze Universal College of Learning Palmerston North Culinary Gold Service Silver Waiariki Institute of Technology Culinary Silver Service Gold Western Institute of Technology at Taranaki Culinary Silver Service Gold Wellington Institute of Technology Culinary Gold Service Silver New Zealand Defence Catering School Culinary Silver Service Silver