For its Young Stars of Tomorrow Competition, Showcook’s Annette Kesler headed for one of country’s top hotel schools and best hotels. The final cook-off, sommelier and service competition for contestants from the Cape Town Hotel School (part of the Cape Peninsula University of Technology) was held at the One&Only Cape Town hotel.
The competition was created by online food portal Showcook to foster food culture in the country. Nine second-year students from the nearby Granger Bay culinary institution took part.
The intense competition saw three student chefs conceive and cook a three-course meal, assisted by three sommeliers and a team of three waiters. The judging panel consisted of: Wolfgang Leyrer, MD of Allee Bleue Estate; Penelope Horwood, wine expert and writer; Nikki Werner, food editor and writer; Nick Patmore, F&B manager of One&Only Cape Town; and Bertus Basson, executive chef of Overture restaurant.
The winners are:
Each of the winning students is in their second year at Cape Town Hotel School. With just a small intake every year, the hospitality institution is committed to creating a strong culture of professionalism within industry. Over a three-year period students are introduced to both the theoretical and practical side of life in the industry.
“Our three year course encompasses every single aspect of the industry with the aim to gain entrance to hotels just like One&Only Cape Town,” says Cape Town Hotel School director Alan Romburgh, who explains the school receives requests for their students from top establishments on a daily basis.
The Cape Town Hotel School has its own student-staffed restaurant at the Granger Bay campus that is open to the public. It is currently undergoing an extensive revamp and will re-open in early October with summer menus.
Founder of Showcook and the Young Stars of Tomorrow Competition, Annette Kesler, says of the support from One&Only Cape Town for the competition: “For many students the opportunity to work in a hotel of this calibre is something that seems so far away. We’re absolutely thrilled to be able to show them what it can be like – it’s competitiveness in the nicest possible way.”
The event calls for students to act as part of a team while showcasing their knowledge, skill and professionalism in their particular field, including chef, sommelier and head waiter.
Marketing and functions coordinator Luke van Rensburg says: “Thanks to the One&Only’s enthusiasm and the mentorship and support from chef Reuben Riffel and sommelier Luvo Ntezo, we have been able to illustrate the realities of the hotel world to our second year students who will begin their practical placements in 2012.”
Winning student chef Clement Pedro will see his menu cooked by Reuben Riffel for a group of 60 wine and food journalists today (Thursday, 29 September). Winning sommelier student Jarryd Green will introduce his wine choices for the three-course meal and head waiter Duane Tomlinson will ensure the experience goes off without a hitch.
Pictured above are (from left): Jarryd Green, Clement Pedro, Duane Tomlinson, Annette Kesler, Alan Romburgh and Reuben Riffel.