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14th January 2020

Two chef teams to represent Wales at Culinary Olympics

Written by: Edward Waddell
The Senior Culinary Team Wales and Junior Culinary Team Wales will be flying the Welsh flag as they take on the 'best in the world' at the IKA Culinary Olympics in Stuttgart next month.

The senior and junior teams will join 2,000 chefs from more than 60 countries at the oldest international culinary art exhibition from 14 to 19 February 2020. 

Nick Davies will lead Senior Culinary Team Wales, while Michael Kirkham-Evans will lead Junior Culinary Team Wales. 

Also selected to represent the senior team was captain Sergio Cinotti, pastry chef Will Richards, Dylan Wyn Owen, Mathew Smith, Mark Robertson, Jay Humphris, Thomas Martin and logistics manager Peter Fuchs. 

The senior team has held four events to run through the dishes it will cook for the Restaurant of Nations part of the competition. Chefs will complete their preparations at Cobra Rugby Club on 17 January. 

The team’s Restaurant of Nations menu for 110 covers opens with a starter of halibut, prawn, ravioli, textures of peas, asparagus and wild garlic and Carmarthen ham. 

The main course is marmalade glazed duck breast, confit leg bon bon, skin granola, root vegetable terrine, carrot puree and port jusDessert is rhubarb, apple, white chocolate, stem ginger and pistachio.

Davies said: “The team has a good mix of seasoned competitors and new members who have brought some fresh ideas to the table. Most of the chefs will be competing at the Culinary Olympics for the first time and are understandably excited by the prospect. They have bonded very well.

“Our Restaurant of Nations menu is looking and tasting good and we are perfecting the chef’s edible buffet, which is being introduced for the first time at the Culinary Olympics.”

The junior team, captained by Callum Smith, includes pastry chef Alys Evans, Dalton Weir, Morgan Read, Lara Walker, Alice Yeomans and James Jarvis. The majority of the junior team is aged between 19 and 21. 

The junior team’s Restaurant of Nations menu features a starter of Pembrokeshire scallop and roe croquette, seabass ceviche, chilled avocado, gin and elderflower cucumber. 

The main course is dry aged fillet and short rib of Welsh beef, sourdough crouton, onion puree and butty bach jus. Dessert is chocolate black cherry chilled fondant, white chocolate and griottine cherry custard, crème fraiche sorbet, sesame tuille and sour cherry gel.

Kirkham-Evans, commented: “Alys competed with the senior team at the Culinary World Cup in November 2018 and two members went as commis chefs to gain experience. The junior team is better prepared that we have ever been.

“Our Restaurant of Nations menu is packed with flavour and requires lots of different skills from the chefs. With 50 per cent of the hot kitchen marks awarded for flavour, we are hoping to score well for taste.”