The 2017 Unilever Food Solutions Chef of the Year competition caters for every kind of chef from experienced artisans to amateur home cooks. With a reputation for launching chefs’ careers for over four decades, the competition remains an extraordinary South African culinary experience. Entered and won by some of the contemporary magnates of the hospitality industry, COTY has been responsible for providing a springboard for the careers of hundreds of chefs. “This year, with three categories – Senior, Junior and Team of 4 – Chef of the Year will deliver the same benefits of recognition, career development, acclaim, the platform to unleash competitive and team spirit and, of course, reward, in the form of prizes totalling R110 000,” says Remco Bol, MD of Unilever Food Solutions.
Designed to keep chefs inspired and on top of their game, the Senior category for chefs 25 years and older provides the opportunity to test their competitive edge, learn new techniques, push their own creative boundaries and win the title of Senior Chef of the Year and a first prize of R15 000, second prize of R10 000 or third prize of R5 000.
With the chance to launch their career at stake, the Junior Chef of the Year is often the most competitive of the three categories. Attracting chefs aged between 18 and 25, the juniors’ compete for a R10 000 first prize, R6 000 second prize and R4 000 third prize. Additionally, the chef placed first will win a week’s working holiday at a fine dining establishment, along with the opportunity to make a name for themselves through the extensive media attention the competition attracts.
The Team of Four category returns by popular demand this year, giving teams consisting of a manager, two chefs and a waiter the chance to change up their daily routine and show off their team skills and spirit for a chance at glory. With a first prize of R20 000, second prize of R12 000 and third prize of R8 000.
Entries have opened and registering is simple. “We’ve brought everything online, making entering simple and interactive,” says Craig Elliott, Executive Head Chef of Unilever Food Solutions, who has been responsible for evolving the competition with new trends and innovations every year. The closing date for entries is Friday 7 July, and regional finals take place between 26 to 28 July. The national final on 6 September will see two individuals or teams from each region preparing a three-course meal incorporating a variety of compulsory proteins and Unilever Food Solutions products.
The entry portal at www.ufs.com/coty also offers inspiration in the form of success stories, past winners and their recipes, judge bios and what they’re looking for, tips and tricks and social media feeds. For more information, go to www.ufs.com/coty.