The Asia-Pacific selection of Bocuse d’Or is set to take place in the Guangzhou Baiyun International Convention Center on May 8 and 9, and to welcome competitors from 11 countries and visitors as well as chefs and food lovers from across the world, according to a pre-competition press conference held in Guangzhou on May 3.
Bocuse d‘Or, created by chef Paul Bocuse in January 1987, has become the world’s most prestigious cooking contest. The biennial world chef championship is frequently referred to as the “Culinary Olympics”.
Similar to the qualification rounds of the Olympic Games, the selection of Bocuse d'Or lasts for 18 months. Before reaching the Bocuse d'Or Finale, which is permanently held in Lyon, France, chefs have to go through both national and continental selection rounds.
Guangzhou, a gastronomic city in South China, will host the Asia-Pacific selection for the first time. After a year of national trials, 11 chefs have qualified for the Asia-Pacific selection. They come from Australia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Vietnam.
A jury composed of world-renowned chefs at the Bocuse d’Or 2017 [Photo provided to chinadaily.com.cn]
During the two-day contest in Guangzhou, the 11 chefs will be required to complete a plate themed on Australian veal tenderloin and a platter themed on salmon, on the basis of which they have to create an original recipe and integrate their country’s food culture. They will be evaluated by a jury composed of the 11 presidents of each national team and four exceptional chefs, with the top five winners going to the Finale in Lyon in January 2019.
A parallel event, Diner des Grands Chefs, will be held at the Guangzhou Garden Hotel on the evening of May 8. This dinner will bring together 200 guests and world-famous chefs, such as Jerome Bocuse, president of Bocuse d’Or, Kim Byoung Jin, three-Michelin-starred chef from South Korea, Alvin Leung, three-Michelin-starred chef from Hong Kong, and Emmanuel Renaut, three-Michelin-starred chef from France.
Guangzhou and Lyon became sister cities thirty years ago. A special delegation of the City of Lyon will travel to Guangzhou to celebrate that anniversary during the Bocuse d’Or Asia-Pacific Selection. In the meantime, Guangzhou will also host a forum for the Délice Association, a global gastronomy network founded in Lyon. The association aims to foster positive links between city governments, chefs, local talents, culinary schools and other food professionals. Guangzhou is its only member city in Chinese mainland.
Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong province known for Cantonese cuisine, has a long commitment to gastronomy. Cantonese restaurants account for 60 percent of all the Chinese restaurants around the world, which makes Guangzhou a good representative of Chinese culinary culture.