Nine young chefs from 9 different countries of the world participated in round 1 of the 9th IIHM (International Institute of Hotel Management) Young Chef Olympiad (YCo) at the IIHM Goa campus today.
The participants of round 1 were Naureen Shaikh from India, Yap Zhen Jie from Malaysia, Brian Patrick Geros from Fiji, Selva Padiatchy from Mauritius, Juan Camilo Duenas Galle from Colombia, Mariyam Hashma Lomir from Maldives, Eroiwane Denis from Seychelles, Emil Zeynaizade from Azerbaijan and Sonam Tshering from Bhutan.
The competition began at 9 am, and these young chefs showcased their culinary skills for 3.5 hours. The competition started with a skill test followed by the preparation of a vegetarian dish and a dessert.
The first round of the Goa Chapter was judged by a renowned panel of international chefs.
Chef Henri Brosi, the executive chef at Lansdowne Club UK and former executive chef of The Dorchester UK; Chef Gary Maclean, the First National Chef of Scotland, the executive chef of City of Glasgow College and MasterChef: The Professionals 2016 winner; Chef John Wood, a Michelin star chef, former executive chef at Burj Al Arab Dubai, and co-founder and director of Kitchen Cut; Chef Garth Strobell, a celebrated chef, author and awarded the Golden Wine Award for contribution in the culinary field; Chef Shaun Kenworthy, restaurateur, food and restaurant consultant and columnist.
The Young Chef Olympiad brings young chefs from different countries together to compete at the highest level. The competition aims to test the culinary skills, techniques and knowledge of these young chefs. Not only that, but it also tests the ability of these students to work under pressure.
The judges were impressed with the skills and efforts the contestants put in, which makes the competition tough to judge. “We are all extremely excited as YCO is happening physically after 2 years, and looking forward to further rounds,” said Sneha Raj, Director of IIHM Goa.
The leading 10 competitors from round 1 will compete in the grand finale; the next competitors, filling the 11th to 20th positions will compete for the Plate Trophy and the remaining competitors will take part in the YCO Dr Suborno Bose Challenge.
The 9th IIHM Young Chef Olympiad looks all set to be the mega culinary competition and conclave of the year.
The grand finale's gold, silver and bronze medallists; the Plate Trophy winner; the YCO Dr Suborno Bose Challenge winner and all other award winners will be announced at the closing awards ceremony on the evening of February 4, 2023.
While the gold medal winner will be awarded a US $5,000 prize, the silver medal winner will bag US $3,000 and the bronze winner, $2,000.
On the occasion, Dr Suborno Bose, the chairman of YCO Global Council, CEO of International Hospitality Council, London, founder and chief mentor of the Indismart Group, who conceptualised and has passionately guided this event since its inception in 2015, said, "The 9th International Young Chef Olympiad is the first major culinary Olympiad since the pandemic anywhere in the world.
In 2023, the theme is “UN Sustainable Development Goals”. This assumes great significance in light of India's G20 presidency.
This year over 60 countries are participating in the Olympiad. This is the first time in the history of the event that there is participation in such large numbers.
IIHM campuses across the country are eagerly looking forward to hosting this mega culinary competition which will not only inspire young chefs from around the world to do their best but also sensitise them to the critical importance of sustainability in the field of hospitality.
2023 being the International Year of Millets, the 9th IIHM Young Chef Olympiad 2023 is also promoting millets in a big way, putting a spotlight on them as well as on sustainability.
The YCO Goa Chapter is supported by the Goa Tourism Department Corporation, Zuri White Sands Resort, Planet Hollywood Beach Resort Goa, Victor Hospital, Indismart Woodbourne Resort, Hilton Hotels Goa, Monika Alcobev Ltd, Tinto Heritage Feni, Quaffine, Mog Asun, Sula Vineyards, Tickle Intense, Matinee Gin, Asian School of Tea India, Ticonnie Liqueur, Downtown Colva, Joecons Beach Shack, Horagen Lager and Marcarflys.