Ka Pie to a Kiwi Icon
Ka Pie to a Kiwi Icon
A Kiwi favourite has stolen judges’ hearts to take away the hotly contested title at the 19th annual Bakels New Zealand Supreme Pie Awards.
A potato top pie from New World Greenmeadows bakery, Napier, has won the coveted supreme pie award, beating out 512 other competitors. The awards were presented at a gala dinner this evening.
Described by the judges as a perfect ratio between a flavoursome filling, a super creamy potato top, and a delicious pastry shell, New World Greenmeadow’s entry edged out the competition in what was a very close run contest.
Top New Zealand chef and celebrity Judge Martin Bosley, who hadn't expected to be blown away by the iconic pie, said tasting it made him really nostalgic.
“I was immediately transported to my grandmother’s kitchen as a young boy when she would cook up her famous shepherd’s pie for the family,” says Bosley. “I was won over by how every aspect of the winning pie was executed to equal perfection.”
The judges all agreed that the calibre of pie entries in the country’s biggest food competition was impressive.
Chief Judge Tim Aspinall, who has been judging pies for 12 years, said selecting a supreme pie award winner has become challenging, with such a high standard of entries to choose from.
“Pie entries need to meet myriad criteria, from pastry to presentation to flavour," says Aspinall. “So, to get to the final stage is a great feat in itself. But, then to beat out over 5,000 pies to achieve the highest accolade is truly remarkable and a well-deserved win.”
But it wasn’t just the potato top pie that had judges salivating. A beautifully presented and delicious Caramelised Walnut, Pear and Blue Cheese Tart in the Café Boutique category, where competition was particularly fierce, also captivated the judges.
Bakels NZ Managing Director Brent Kersel remarked how the quality of pie presentation and the level of creativity builds year on year.
“We can see the level of passion that goes into the making of these pies and it is especially evident in the Café Boutique and Gourmet Fruit categories, where entries are veritable works of art,” says Kersel. “Every year, we see pies that deserve a place in the national art gallery.”
Pie award veteran Tim Aspinall agrees. “Pie making is truly an art form. No matter what type of pie we’re talking about, that first impression is crucial, but a successful pie maker will get all the elements right.”
The panel of 21 judges spent over 10 hours last Thursday (July 16) judging 5200 pies, which were blind coded in 12 categories, including the new Kiwi favourite Potato Top Pie category.
A self-confessed mad pie fan Martin Bosley was impressed by the judging process and by the judges’ level of experience.
“I was overwhelmed by the enormity of the whole operation,” says Bosley. “There were so many entries and coupled with such a high standard and quality of pies it soon became evident how stiff this competition really is. Kudos to the judges, some of whom taste tested over 48 pies in the one day, who have to make the tough selections.
“The judges are bakers who are baking every day, they know what they’re judging and they are truly passionate about it,” adds Bolsey. “I was very privileged to be part of this exciting opportunity.”
There were forty-nine awards presented tonight at the 2015 Bakels New Zealand Supreme Pie Awards gala dinner at Shed 10 in Auckland. Popular presenter Dominic Bowden of Dancing with the Stars fame hosted the Speakeasy-themed evening, with celebrity presenters Haley Holt, Nici Wickes and Graeme Hill.
The baker of the Supreme Pie walked away with the coveted Supreme Pie Maker trophy and $7,500 cash, while Gold award winners received $1000 cash.
The Gold Award winners are:
Mince and Gravy – Khemara Yin of The Bakehouse Café, Thames
Steak and Gravy – Bunchoeun Keo of One Tree Bakery, Mt Maunganui
Chicken and Vegetable – Srieng Choeu of Fresh Bun Café, Tuakau
Gourmet Fruit – Sao Bunarith of Dairy Flat Bakery, Albany
Gourmet Meat – Srieng Choeu of Fresh Bun Café, Tuakau
Vegetarian – Bunthy Te of Angkor Wat Bakery and Café, Bay of Plenty
Bacon and Egg – Vong Hean of Mairangi Bay Bakery, Mairangi Bay
Mince and Cheese – Sopheap Chouk of Te Awamutu Bakehouse Café, Te Awamutu
Steak and Cheese – Roger Cathro of Pak n Save, Petone
Potato Top Pie – New World Greenmeadows, Napier
Commercial Wholesale – Phil Lyons of Couplands Bakeries, Christchurch
Café Boutique – Zaqeeyan Zakhiyan of Divine Cakes and Desserts, Christchurch