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The Meilleur du Meilleur

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As an American, I find it interesting that in France a pastry chef seems to be a more prestigious job than a lawyer. But you might say culinary is to France what litigation is to the U.S. Take for example Claire Verneil, who gave up the legal profession after winning the French TV competition MasterChef. She is now the Chef Pâtissier at Monte Carlo’s four-star Fairmont hotel.

So what better place could there be for a yacht chef competition than France? Or more precisely, Monaco?

Claire Verneil joined four other esteemed French chefs on the jury to decide the Meilleur Chef de Yacht 2013 during The Rendezvous in Monaco. As in previous years, HSH Prince Albert II’s chef, Christian Garcia, presided over the jury.

Chefs from the motor yachts Pride, Ingot, Blue Ice and Stella Maris met on the dock in the wee hours of the morning on June 22 to collect a basket of ingredients, from which they had to create a main dish and a dessert. They could choose to use any of the ingredients but had to incorporate Wakaya Perfection 100% Organic Ginger Powder into one or both dishes. Each chef had three hours to prepare their main, presenting it to the judges on the host yacht Karia, and then an additional hour to make the dessert.

They were judged on preparation, technique, taste, originality and presentation, but it was the originality category that put the winner ahead of the rest. Mixing it up won Cristiano Tomei of Stella Maris top honors this year. He made the risky decision of incorporating sweet into his main dish in the form of strawberries and granny smith apples alongside his sea bream fish and the savory flavors of red beets and fennel into the dessert, which resembled a plant growing from the earth.

All the chefs impressed on the ginger front. “The marriage between the food and the ginger was perfect,” stated Garcia.

Each of the other competitors was recognized as well. Chef Luis Rafael Hurtado of Ingot, better known as Chef Raffie, received a special mention for best main dish, Chef Orlando Orlandini of Pride won for best dessert and Chef Fabien Berlaimont of Blue Ice impressed the judges with his organization.

Considering the caliber of the jury in this culinary mecca, it was very high praise indeed all around.


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Posted by: btec22222( Visit ) at 16/05/2014 23:30

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