From 5 to 10 October 2012, our boys and girls in green and gold will be competing in the world's biggest and most prestigious culinary battle.
Press release, 3 October 2012
With our amazing Olympians and Paralympians doing us proud in London, Olympic fever has gripped the nation. If you, like most of the country, are experiencing a post-Olympic slump, then don’t despair, as there is another team representing South Africa that you can get excited about.
To food what the Springboks are to rugby, Culinary Team South Africa is the official squad that represents South Africa internationally in culinary competitions around the world. The team landed in Germany on 2 October, and from 5 to 10 October 2012, Culinary Team South Africa will be competing in the world’s most prestigious gastronomic battle - the IKA Culinary Olympics in Erfurt, Germany.
The team has practiced for four days a month at the South African Chefs Association, creating the innovative menus for invited guests and the public too. The kitchen is set up just as it will be at the Olympics, and the senior hot kitchen teams have about six hours to prepare their three-course menus to serve for 110 people, while the junior hot kitchen team has three hours to prepare a two-course menu for 90 people.
There are individual entrants in the cold table categories too, with chefs creating ten different beautifully plated dishes, as well as one member creating a dramatic sugar showpiece in the Individual Artistic Category using only edible ingredients.
Culinary Team SA are currently ranked 10th in the world and consists of seven junior members and 12 senior members. The team won a bevy of medals at the Luxembourg World Cup in 2010 – seven silver medals in hot kitchen, seven silver medals in cold table, one silver medal in the individual showpiece section and three bronze medals in the Individual Entries.
Culinary Team SA fresh off the plane, in Frankfurt, before heading off to Erfurt. To see photos of the Culinary Team SA in action at their final practice click HERE
A proud Olympic culinary history
South Africa first sent a team overseas to compete in the Culinary Olympics in 1980; bringing home five individual gold medals and winning fourth place overall in the hot kitchen competition. For the first time ever in 2000, the South African National Culinary Team or Culinary Team South Africa as it is now known, was comprised of a wholly South African born, and trained, team.
Throughout the culinary team’s history, renowned chefs have been a part of the team, including Bill Gallagher, Heinz Brunner, Manfred Muellers, Bruce Burns, Andrew Atkinson, Garth Shnier, Paul Hartmann, David Higgs and Garth Stroebel.
“The Culinary Olympics is the benchmark whereby the chefs of the world have their opportunity to compete for not only gold, silver and bronze medals but also to gain friendship, knowledge and bring new ideas into the culinary arena. South Africa stands proud within the list of competing countries from around the world, since first competing in 1980; South African chefs have participated at the highest level gaining many awards and much respect from their fellow competitors,” says Dr Bill Gallagher, previous Culinary Team SA member, Culinary Team SA Patron and Honorary Life President SACA.
In 2004, Team SA brought back four medals constituting of three silvers and one bronze. In 2008, Culinary Team SA brought back a gold medal in the Hot Kitchen section – the first gold to be won by South Africa in 16 years. In the same year, Culinary Team SA were awarded the official South African Team status by the Department of Arts and Culture’s Bureau of Heraldry. This recognition reflects the enormous achievements of the South African Chefs Association and growth of the South African National Culinary Team.
The full list of team members participating in the Olympics:
1. Bruce Burns – Team Manager
2. Nicholas Sarnadas – Logistics Manager
3. HD Fraser – Senior Team Captain (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
4. Tanja Kruger – Senior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
5. Nadin Pospech-Demmler– Senior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
6. Abubaker Bagaria– Senior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
7. Charl Gyzen– Senior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
8. Siyabulela Kobo– Senior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen Reserve & Cold Table & Individual Entry)
9. Kevin Miller – Senior Team Pastry Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
10. Peter Gyorgyicsek – Senior Team Pastry Chef (Cold Table Show Piece & Individual Entry)
11. Jerome Norton – Senior Team Chef (Individual Entry & Hot Kitchen Support Cleaner)
12. Edward Clegg– Senior Team Chef (Individual Entry and Junior Hot Kitchen Pass)
13. Zola Luwaca– Senior Team Chef (Individual Entry)
14. Kelvin Joel– Senior Team Chef (Individual Entry)
15. Keiron Reynolds – Junior Team Captain (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
16. Vusimuzi Ndlovu – Junior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
17. Jacques Swart– Junior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
18. Justin Simpson– Junior Team Chef (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)
19. Natasha Fernandes– Junior Team Pastry Chef. (Hot Kitchen & Cold Table)