Get a taste of the NZChefs Fonterra Culinary Olympics team

Kiwis were given a first taste of some of our best culinary talent on Saturday night at a launch event for the NZChefs team competing in next year’s Culinary Olympics

The competition, to be held in Erfurt, Germany in October 2016, will host 2000 chefs from 40 countries around the world. Next year’s event will mark the first time a New Zealand team has entered the competition since 1988.

The 180 guests at the weekend’s function had a first taste of five proposed dishes for the ‘hot service’ element of the competition.

Check out all the dishes in this Facebook album.

Grant Watson, Director of Global Foodservice – Fonterra, which is sponsoring the NZChefs team, 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. 

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 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.

The team includes a mix of experienced competition chefs with some exciting new talent, including 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). 

“The opportunity to take the journey to the ultimate competition destination does not come around very often. Performing under this kind of pressure and at an international level is such an amazing career opportunity for all of us,” said Team manager Neil Maclnnes. 

The menu

Tiger Prawn Salad wrapped in Scallop Cannelloni with seared scallop, bacon powder, pickled fennel purée and sauce vierge.

Akaroa Salmon Fillet on seaweed and vegetable salad, miso mayonnaise and gion dressing.

Roasted Spiced Venison Loin set on creamed spinach with venison neck tart, potato bread and butter pudding, carrot and cumin gel, duxelle and glazed baby carrot with Pinot Noir jus.

Mushroom and Cream Cheese Paté gruyère espuma and parmesan biscuit.

Vanilla Parfait with Raspberry Sorbet encased in sprayed chocolate on hazelnut dacquoise, coconut and popping candy, chocolate crumb, mango jelly, passionfruit curd, whipped chocolate mousse and dark chocolate fond.