EYCA 2023_Dimitrios Mavropoulos

Dimitrios Mavropoulos is South Aegean’s finalist to the EYCA 2023

“I draw inspiration for my dishes from various sources, the greatest being traditional cuisine, for which I have a special interest. Therefore, my ambition is to enrich my knowledge and techniques by learning from all that my country has to offer,” affirms Dimitrios Mavropoulos, the young talent that will represent South Aegean, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2019 at the 7th European Young Chef Award.

Dimitrios is 25 years old. In the last year he concluded his culinary studies and started working as a commis chef at M-eating restaurant, in Mykonos. “The reason why I selected this particular establishment is because it embodies values such as the respect for and use of traditional ingredients and recipes, something that I am very much intrigued by” claims Dimitrios.

He decided to study culinary arts because of his profound interest in the everyday cooking and the feelings that a well-cooked meal brings out in people: “I have always considered cooking as a way to bring happiness to my fellow people and I cannot think of a any better way to do this than offering great combinations of flavours and scents.”

“As a journey holds more value that the actual destination, my expectations related to the European Young Chef are not restricted to winning a specific award (though in all honesty I would be ecstatic about), but to focus mainly on showcasing the beauty and rich flavour of my region’s cuisine – one of the main reasons behind my plate selection,” he concludes.

At the European Young Chef Award 2023, Dimitrios will present an innovative interpretation of the traditional recipe Lard with Cabbage, which is typically prepared and served at Xoirosfagia (literally pig carcasses) folk festivals in Mykonos. In the ancient times, most Mykonian families used to keep pigs and feed them for the whole year until October or November, when they slaughtered them. Pigs and livestock in general were considered part of the family’s fortune and, as such, no piece of it was allowed to go to waste. The goal was to use the entirety of the animal (from nose to tail) to provide meals for the family for a whole year to come.

About IGCAT’s European Young Chef Award

The European Young Chef Award is an annual competition organised by the International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Art and Tourism (IGCAT) that gathers young culinary talents from the awarded and candidate European Regions of Gastronomy. Selected each year through local contests, finalists to the European Young Chef Award compete by innovating traditional recipes from their regions using local ingredients.

The 7th edition of the European Young Chef Award is organised and promoted by IGCAT and hosted by Hauts-de-France, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2023. The competition will be held at the Lycée Hôtelier Le Touquet on 20-24 November 2023 and is supported by Hauts-de-France 2023 consortium members: Chambre d’Agriculture Hauts de France; CCI Hauts de France; Chambre des Métiers et de l’Artisanat Hauts de France; Hauts de France Tourisme; Plateforme des Organisme du Tourisme; UMIH Union des Métiers et des Industrie de l’Hôtellerie; UniLaSalle; Programme Investissement Avenir; Caisse des dépôts; GIP Forinval Amiens; Région Académique Hauts de France; and Région Hauts de France.

About the World/European Regions of Gastronomy

World/European Regions of Gastronomy, guided by IGCAT, are working together to strengthen food security through the celebration of distinctive food cultures; create employment by stimulating creativity and gastronomic innovation; nourish children and adults through culinary and cultural education; driving environmental sustainability in tourism, hospitality and agricultural sectors; supporting balance and sustainable tourism practices; highlighting and supporting expertise from within rural and urban communities, creating connections and sharing good practices; and contributing to community health and well-being.


IGCAT aims to empower local communities by raising awareness of the importance of protecting and promoting distinct regional food, culture, arts and natural assets as part of sustainable and balanced tourism and development strategies. This is essential to safeguarding our planet, health, wellness and local economies.

IGCAT is a non-profit institute established in 2012, working with regional stakeholder consortiums in the fields of gastronomy, culture, arts and tourism. It counts on the expertise of a worldwide network of experts and works in partnership with specialised intergovernmental organisations.

IGCAT founded the World/European Region of Gastronomy Award and is the official secretariat for the World/European Regions of Gastronomy Platforms. Furthermore, the Institute has developed the European Young Chef Award, the World Food Gift Challenge, the Top Websites for Foodie Travelers Award and the international Food Film Menu.