by Jessica Travis
SUNY Cobleskill will host the Northeast Young Chefs Competition, one of ten regional events presented by the international gastronomic society, Conférérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs as a way to support and promote future young chefs by giving them the opportunity to demonstrate their skills. Six competitors from varying institutions in the northeast, including two from SUNY Cobleskill, will compete against each other in the campus’ Champlin Culinary Labs on Saturday, March 29, 2014 from 7:00 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. Competitors will be presented with mystery market baskets assembled by the SUNY Cobleskill Culinary Department that will be filled with key ingredients produced on the SUNY Cobleskill campus or from among the products available through the Schoharie Fresh online farmer’s market. Each competitor then has four hours to design and prepare a three-course meal to serve to six judges using the ingredients from the basket.
Martin Frei, Conseiller Culinaire Provincial from The Chaîne des Rôtisseurs, explained the importance of the event by saying, “Today’s young Chefs will be creating a culinary journey of unique flavors for a gourmet experience in their future professional careers.”
Among the judges for the event will be SUNY Cobleskill Acting President Debra Thatcher and her husband James; Yono Purnomo, SUNY Cobleskill Alumnus and Executive Chef of Albany restaurant Yono’s; and A.J. Jayapal, local Chef and food and beverage director for the Mallozi Group. Ben Vaughn, host of Food Network’s Health Inspectors, who will have presented seminars for SUNY Cobleskill students the day before, is also expected to be on hand to watch the action.
Medals are awarded to the top three chefs. The winner that day will go on to compete in the national contest on May 17th at Johnson and Wales University in Miami. In September, an international contest featuring approximately 24 contestants from among the 80 member nations, will take place at the Unilever Food Solutions Test Kitchen in Durban, South Africa.
About Conférérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs
Conférérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs is the world’s oldest international gastronomic society, founded in Paris in 1248. It is devoted to preserving the camaraderie and pleasures of the table and to promoting excellence in all areas of the hospitality arts. This year’s event will be one of an extensive and impressive line of competitions that are hosted by Les Chianes des Rotisseurs. The first competition, which took place in 1977 in Switzerland, supported and promoted future young chefs by giving them the opportunity to demonstrate their skills. This tradition is still being upheld today, with competitions held at regional, national, and international levels in numerous countries around the world.