European Young Chef Award 2019
The European Young Chef Award 2019 was organised and promoted by the International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Arts and Tourism (IGCAT) and South Aegean, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2019, and was held at Rodos Palace hotel, on 23-24 October 2019.
Nine finalists took part in 2019 edition representing the following regions: Catalonia (Spain), Minho (Portugal), Aarhus-Central Denmark Region (Denmark), North Brabant (The Netherlands), Sibiu (Romania), South Aegean (Greece), Slovenia, Coimbra Region (Portugal) and Menorca (Spain).
The competition was organised on two consecutive days under the theme Innovation on Tradition, whereby finalists were asked to innovate traditional recipes from their regions by using local seasonal products.
On the first day, the young chefs gathered to attend a presentation by IGCAT President, Dr. Diane Dodd on the importance of protecting and promoting food diversity.
Finalists enthusiastically signed a protocol agreement to become IGCAT Regional Chef Ambassadors, thus committing to spread IGCAT’s message on the importance of food and cultural diversity and to adopt sustainable practices in their future careers.
Afterwards, they prepared and presented the chosen traditional recipes to be tasted by the jury and peers. This first round was vital for the young chefs to share knowledge about regional gastronomies and products.
To conclude the day, finalists had the chance to experience a food tour of Rhodes, which offered them the priceless opportunity to learn about local gastronomy and produce, and to meet each other in a relaxed environment.
Visits included DM Farm in Kremasti village and Kounakis Winery in Emponas village. Finally, the young chefs had a hands-on experience preparing giaprakia at Paranga Tavern in Apollona.
On the second day, the European Young Chef Award 2019 competition took place, with finalists presenting their innovative dishes to an international jury of experts chaired by chef Argiro Barbarigou, from Papadakis Restaurant in Athens. The jury included Dr. Diane Dodd, President of IGCAT; Ulla-Alexandra Mattl, Project Director at EURAKOM; Dorian Lungu, Owner of LUADO Chocolate; Francisco S. Guitard, Executive Director of NAUTA Institute; and Andreas Bjerring, winner of the European Young Chef Award 2018.
The winner of the European Young Chef Award 2019 was Eirini Giorgoudiou from South Aegean, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2019, who presented the dish 12 Elements, innovating on the traditional recipe Okras with Grouper.
Jure Dretnik from Slovenia, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2021 won the second prize with his dish Lunch of Mowers, while third prize went to Hans Kjellsson from Aarhus-Central Denmark Region, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2017 and his dish The Taste of Home.
The European Young Chef Award 2019 was organised by IGCAT and hosted by