Australia in top 10 at Bocuse d’Or 2017
Bocuse d’Or 2017 took place this week at the SIRHA trade show in Lyon with 24 countries competing for the ‘Gold Bocuse’. Chef Dan Arnold and his commis Ryan Cosentino came in at eighth place, securing Australia’s highest ever result in the 30 years of the competition.
Australia also won Best Promotional Campaign.
The gold prize went to Mathew Peters from Per Se restaurant in New York, USA, while Norway’s Christopher William Davidsen was awarded silver and Viktor Andresson from Iceland won bronze.
Dan Arnold and Ryan Cosentino were accompanied to Lyon by Bocuse d’Or Australia President, Philippe Mouchel, and team coach Romuald Fassenet MOF. Mouchel also served on the Jury as a judge.
This year’s challenge required participants to create two courses, the first being a platter that reflected an interpretation of the Lyonnais specialty ‘chicken and shellfish’ using the famed Bresse Chicken. The second course was to be presented on a plate and be entirely plant-based. Both dishes must be made from scratch at the competition in just five hours and 35 minutes.
Arnold says, “It was quite a challenge, but once we knew the dishes required and the mandatory ingredients, we could begin training in earnest.
“We were fortunate that some very talented chefs from France, including our coach Romuald Fassenet MOF and 2005 winner Serge Vieira, got behind the Australian team and assisted with our training. We also received much support from French companies and media, which went towards our success in the promotional campaign.”
Arnold admits that all the training in the world could not prepare him for the sheer intensity of the competition – the noise from the crowd, and the scrutiny of so many famed chefs including Joël Robuchon, Jerôme Bocuse, Thomas Keller and Alain Ducasse. Simply, “it was an experience I’ll never forget.”
Mouchel says he couldn’t be prouder of the Australian team. “We had a very good team, actually more a family than a team. They really stepped up to the challenge and are a real credit to their country and its hospitality industry.”
Regarding the ‘vegetal plate, Mouchel reveals, “Many of the jury, including Thomas Keller himself, told me our plate was the best of the two days, one of them even give us the top score of 40 points.”
“I have no doubt one day, if we keep working hard, we can reach the podium. This year USA lead the way, and we congratulate them, it was a well deserved Bocuse d’Or win.”