Unilever Chef of the Year 2017: Cape Town Regional Finals
The Unilever Chef of the Year competition is 42 years old and is considered one of South Africa’s most prestigious culinary awards. It has been the stepping stone for some of South Africa’s most loved Chefs, including Reuben Riffel who won in 2007. Experienced industry professionals look forward to it as an opportunity to showcase their talent while using Unilever Food Solutions products. I was very lucky to be able to go behind the scenes of the Cape Town regional finals which took place in Century City. The finals will be held in September at Unilever HQ in Durban.
Chefs can enter one of three categories in this premier culinary competition namely: Junior Chef of the year, Senior Chef of the year and Team of Four which is made up of a kitchen brigade. In addition to cash prizes for all categories, the Junior category will include a one week all-expenses paid work experience in France with Michelin star chef Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen of JAN fame.
The five Cape Town senior finalists had to cook a three course meal for three people in two hours. The Chefs have to incorporate mystery basket ingredients into their dishes which are Unilever products. The expert judges looked at the presentation, taste and texture of each dish among other things. Due to the results being audited before release, we have to wait before we know who goes through to the final round for a chance to be named Chef of the Year 2017.
In the mean time, we get to enjoy pictures of all the delectable food created by these talented Chefs. Pictures 1 – 5 represent each finalist in order.
*All pictures are my own unless otherwise stated.