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Proudly SA Team Carry the Flag with Pride

The South African National Culinary Team have been award a diploma for their Culinary Art display in the Cold Table category and a bronze medal in the Hot Kitchen component of the prestigious IKA Culinary Olympics. The Culinary Olympics is the greatest culinary battle in the world, with 59 nations and over 2 000 chefs represented in the competition.

 

 

 

FLTR: Arno Ralph, Henrico Grobbelaar, Minette Smith, Dion

Vengatass, Kirstin Hellemann, Blake Anderson and Trevor Boyd

The South African National Culinary Team have been award a diploma for their Culinary Art display in the Cold Table category and a bronze medal in the Hot Kitchen component of the prestigious IKA Culinary Olympics. The Culinary Olympics is the greatest culinary battle in the world, with 59 nations and over 2 000 chefs represented in the competition.

The Team of seven chefs presented an impressive display of culinary art and a three-course menu to 110 people. Each day over the four days of the competition, eight countries put their best culinary foot forward, with a total of 32 National Culinary Teams competing in each of the two categories.

South Africa’s spirited young team worked through the night on Sunday to painstakingly craft 92 individual items, each a work of art. Precision and accuracy are crucial as each item is coated in aspic, a gelatine-like substance, to preserve and finish off each dish. Teams are judged on presentation and innovation, composition, correct professional preparation and serving arrangement, each of which carries a potential 25 points, to reach a total out of 100.

In the second component of the competition, the Restaurant of Nations, the presentation of a three-course menu to 110 members of the public, from which plates are randomly served to judges, was required. The Team’s participation this year was fraught with logistical challenges, including having to source lobster 24 hours before the competition was due to begin, because of the imported crayfish not being cleared on arrival in Frankfurt. Despite this and many other unforeseen challenges, the Team presented their Olympic menu with pride, doing South Africa proud.

“Our team put out the best food we’ve served to date in a menu that reflects the diversity of our country. It has been an honour for this team to represent South Africa and to be among the world’s top culinary nations. We’ve learnt an enormous amount and we’ve come away enriched by the experience, and committed to passing on our knowledge and learnings,” says Heinz Brunner, Manager of Culinary Team South Africa.

First held in Frankfurt in 1900, the IKA Culinary Olympics takes place every four years in Germany. In 1980 South Africa competed for the first time, making 2016 the ninth anniversary of South Africa’s participation.

The South African National Culinary Team participated in the IKA Culinary Olympics under the auspices of the South African Chefs Association. The team’s participation has been made possible through the generous sponsorship of headline sponsor LSC/Imperial; along with partners City Lodge Hotel Group – which provided accommodation for the team when they travelled to practices, ChefWorks – which provided the team’s entire uniform range including casual wear, Turn ‘n Slice – which provided all the fruit and vegetables used for the practices and promotional lunches/dinners, Global Knives – which ensured the chefs were properly equipped in terms of knives, and N1 Restaurant Suppliers – which provided the Springbok meat for all Hot Kitchen practices and promotional lunches/dinners over the two years of practice and preparation ahead of the IKA Culinary Olympics.

“The South African Chefs Association is extremely proud of the achievements of the South African Culinary National Teams that have recently represented not only the industry, but the entire country, at the IKA Culinary Olympics. I would like to take this opportunity on behalf of the board of Directors and our 8000 members to sincerely thank each valued member of both the Senior and Junior Teams, whose dedication and commitment to their craft and their successes clearly pave the way for the next generation of young home-grown South African chefs to challenge and compete with the World’s best. We are now looking forward to IKA Culinary Olympics 2020 with increased effort, energy, and enthusiasm.” says Stephen Billingham, President of the South African Chefs Association.

The chefs representing South Africa on the National Culinary Team are: Henrico Grobbelaar (Southern Sun The Cullinan) – Team Captain, Dion Vengatass (Belmond Mount Nelson), Trevor Boyd (The Michelangelo), Blake Anderson (Montecasino), Minette Smith (HTA School of Culinary Art), Kirstin Hellemann (Belmond Mount Nelson) and Arno Ralph (Lindt & Sprungli).

For further information log on to www.saca.co.za.

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