Oliver Sørensen

Oliver Sørensen, Central Denmark’s finalist to the EYCA 2022

“Nowadays you can get inspired by anything. Something you saw on social media, a thing you heard from a friend or a colleague, traditions, … Mostly, I get inspired by the beautiful quality of the products I use, where they come from and what stories they bring with them” claims Oliver Kim Sørensen, the finalist who will represent Aarhus-Central Denmark, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2017 at the 6th European Young Chef Award.

17 years old, Oliver has been studying as a chef for 3 years and half, spending 9 months on the cruise ship MS Polarlys, Hurtigruten and 9 months at Alaise restaurant in Oslo. However, he has always been interested in gastronomy and had the chance to experience food from the different European countries where he lived, such as Austria, Denmark, and Norway. 

“My dream is one day to become a head chef at my own restaurant and get it into the Michelin Guide. My father is the one who got me into gastronomy; after all he has been working in the top of hospitality for over 20 years. When I investigated gastronomy, I realised that chefs are the coolest role in this service. So, I really look forward to continuing this line of work.”  

About the European Young Chef Award, Oliver states: “I really enjoy entering a competition like this. It brings us, the younger generation of chefs, the future of gastronomy, together. It brings us experience, inspires us, and pushes us to become better. I think I am going to learn a lot, both from the competitions and the other finalists, but also from the Norwegian region of Trondheim-Trøndelag.”

At the European Young Chef Award 2022, he will present his innovative reinterpretation of the traditional dish Brænde kærlighed (literally Burning love), a recipe that goes way back to the 1800s. Based on mashed potatoes with a topping of bacon and onions, this dish originated in the rural areas of Denmark where pigs were very popular farming animals. Brænde kærlighed is a Danish expression for really loving someone. In the olden times, there was nothing more loving than giving your family a nurturing, warm and tasty meal. Brænde kærlighed became one of the most iconic dishes in Denmark during World War II, due to the vital role that potatoes played in the everyday diet.  

About IGCAT’s European Young Chef Award

The European Young Chef Award is an annual competition organised by 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 6th edition of the European Young Chef Award is organised and promoted by the International Institute of Gastronomy, Culture, Art and Tourism (IGCAT) and hosted by the Trondheim-Trøndelag, European Region of Gastronomy awarded 2022. The competition will be held at Strinda High School in Trondheim on 11-12 November 2022, with the support of Trondheim Municipality, Trøndelag County Authority, and Innovation Norway.

About the World/European Regions of Gastronomy

Candidate and awarded 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.