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Serving up the best in NZ Hospitality

PRESS RELEASE 8 September 2008

Serving up the best in NZ Hospitality

The 2008 HospitalityNZ show proved to be the best yet with an increase in the number of attendees demonstrating an ever increasing enthusiasm and passion in the sector. New Zealand’s hospitality industry pulled out all the stops over the past three days as the competitions heated up, the most innovative products shone, the wine-talk flowed and seminars were fully booked.

There were a number of outstanding highlights at the show one of which included Alain Devahive, top research and development chef from the Spanish restaurant elBulli, who educated and enthralled the crowds with demonstrations of ‘techno-emotional cuisine’ during his five master classes. With attendance from many in the New Zealand Hospitality Industry the public can now look forward to sampling the culinary delights of spherification, gellification and emulsification.

With chefs’ jackets starched, torques standing to attention and frying pans on hot, this year’s Culinary Fare was a thrilling melange of 69 hospitality inspired competitions. The prestigious New Zealand Restaurant of the Year award saw Vinnies Restaurant in Auckland reign supreme while New Zealand Chef of the Year award went to Ken O’Connell from Vidal Winery Restaurant in Hastings.

Demonstrating that the armed forces are more than just a great training ground for soldiers, students from the New Zealand Defence Force Joint Catering School won the 2008 Toque D’Or award. Students from training institutions across New Zealand compete in a 150 minute cook-off, preparing six covers of a three course meal in pursuit of the ‘golden hat’ trophy.

Sunday night saw the hospitality industry don their black ties and ball dresses for the Feast by Famous Chefs, where four of New Zealand’s top chefs wowed their peers with course after course of mouth watering culinary delights. Two of the industry’s key personalities were honoured during the course of the evening with the Innovators Award going to Simon Gault for his proactive and creative approach to cuisine, having gained the respect of peers in the industry and achieving at the highest levels going. Wellingtonian, John Lawrence, was awarded the prestigious Hall of Fame award for his significant contribution and exceptional service to the foodservice/ hospitality industry.

The first ever Global Chefs Challenge took place on Tuesday with six competitors from Auckland to Southland being judged on presentation, innovation and taste of food, as well as their working methods in the kitchen. Mark Sycamore from Blanket Bay in Glenorchy was the overall winner and he now goes on to represent New Zealand at the Continental Final in Australia, competing against chefs from Australia, Fiji and Vanuatu.

Sky City’s Bar 3 was awash with flying bottles on Tuesday 2nd August as the Grand Final of the Flair Bartending competition took place. The crowds were thrilled and amazed by the incredible skill levels and demonstrations put on by the competitors. Brad Gibson was the outstanding performer in both the Galliano Performance Flair and the Working Flair and it was his superior technical genius that secured him the winner’s title.

In the Bledisloe Cup of coffee making, New Zealand had its first ever win over the Australians and took out the title of Da Vinci Trans-Tasman Barista Champions 2008. It was a knuckle biting race with the Kiwis proving they have superior taste and artistry when it comes to making an amazing cup of coffee.

Michele Harrod, the manager of HospitalityNZ, noted; “Every year we endeavour to exceed the industry’s expectations and we have been really delighted with the feedback we have received from this year’s show. The standard of competitions at the Culinary Fare was incredible which is exciting news for the public”

With preparation already starting for next year’s show it promises to be another ground breaking event so watch this space for HospitalityNZ 2009.

ENDS


Notes to Editor:

Award Winners

Innovators Award
Simon Gault – Manager of Euro, Pasha and Jervois Steak House in Auckland and Shed 5 and Pravda in Wellington.

Hall of Fame Award
John Lawrence - He is the owner of many successful eateries in Wellington including Tinakori Bistro, One Red Dog, the Martinborough Hotel, he has provided food services at the National Museum, Te Papa (He was also GM for 18 months!), plus numerous other festivals.

Global Chef’s Challenge
Mark Sycamore – Sous Chef at Glenorchy in Blanket Bay, 28 years of age, former NZ Chef of the Year and past winner of the Gordon Ramsey scholarship.

Da Vinci Trans-Tasman Barista Championships
The New Zealand team ‘Three Flat Whites and a Short Black’ consisted of Carl Sara owner of Christchurch Muffin Breaks, Emma Markland-Webster from Atomic Coffee, Luciano Marcolino trainer for Vivace in Christchurch and Chris White from Auckland Coffee roaster Altura Coffee.

Flair Bartending Championships
Winner: Brad Gibson, Lennon Bar
Second: Everton Barbieri, Sky City Bar 3
Third: Anthony Rima, Sky City Bar 3


Major Award Winners at the 2008 New Zealand Culinary Fare

New Zealand Restaurant of the Year 2008
Overall winner: Vinnies Restaurant, Auckland.
Fine Dining: Vinnies Restaurant, Auckland
Smart/Casual Dining: Okurukuru Winery, New Plymouth

New Zealand Chef of the Year 2008
Ken O'Connell Vidal Winery Restaurant, Hastings

NZ Sommelier of the Year 2008
Michael Bancks Craggy Range, Havelock North

New Zealand Service Professional of the Year 2008
Roy Assadi The Westin, Auckland

New Zealand Pastry Chef of the Year 2008
Kiran Shetty LSG Sky Chefs New Zealand Ltd, Auckland

New Zealand Commis Chef of the Year 2008
Giann Ordonio SKYCITY Auckland

New Zealand Junior Food & Beverage Person of the Year 2008
Soo Yeon Lee North Shore International Academy, Auckland

Hot Kitchen Excellence Award 2008
Sarah Rumary Rydges Hotel Christchurch

Training Excellence Award 2008
North Shore International Academy, Auckland

Secondary Schools Excellence Award 2008
Southern Cross Campus, Auckland

Toque d’Or
New Zealand Defence Force Joint Catering School

Junior Team Skills
North Shore International Academy

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