[Press release] Soufriere Comprehensive Secondary has been crowned champions in the 2018 SLHTA Chefs in Schools Cook-Off Competition (CISCO 2018).
Karina Abraham and Cheyenne Hippolyte were declared the winning team in a keenly contested challenge that took place Friday (June 15) at the Ciceron Secondary School, the defending champions.
The Entrepot Secondary team of Norma Bernard and Kourtney Mohammed clinched second place, followed by Tanicka Ettienne and Julian Henry of Micoud Secondary who placed third.
The victorious Soufriere team was coached by Chef Frank Faucher of Anse Chastenet Resort.
Chef Edna Butcher of Cap Maison and Chef Clayton Julien of Sandals Regency La Toc trained the Entrepot Secondary and Micoud secondary teams respectively.
The competition judges were Chef Nicodemus Joseph of Bay Gardens Resorts, Chef Niguel Gerald and Refer Leonce of Sandals Resorts and Chef Orlando Satchell of Orlando’s Restaurant & Bar.
The Chefs in Schools Cook-Off Competition is organised annually by the St. Lucia Hotel & Tourism Association and funded by the SLHTA’s Tourism Enhancement Fund.
This year’s competition kicked off on a high note. Supporters from the participating schools turned up to cheer on their respective teams and excitement was running high all throughout the event.
Each team was given an hour to prepare a National/Signature Dish. After the first round, the scores were tallied and the three teams with the highest scores proceeded to battle it out in the second round – the Mystery Basket challenge – for the championship title. They had ninety minutes to prepare their dishes.
The winning duo will now go on to represent St. Lucia at the upcoming Caribbean Junior Duelling Competition in Barbados slated for August 13th to 20th 2018.
12 students from six secondary schools took part in the competition, Soufriere Comprehensive Secondary, Micoud Secondary, Vieux Fort Comprehensive Secondary, Ciceron Secondary, Entrepot Secondary and Castries Comprehensive Secondary.
The Chefs in Schools Cook-Off Competition is the culmination of a year-long internship involving local hotel chefs and the participating students who are enrolled in the secondary schools’ food and nutrition program. The chefs provide them with hands-on training and mentorship to help them sharpen their culinary skills. Each team is adopted by a hotel in close proximity to their school. The SLHTA coordinates the mentorship program.
Tourism Enhancement Fund Projects Coordinator, Wendel George hailed this year’s competition as one of the best yet and praised the junior chefs for their talent and dedication.
“The teams came out really strong this year. The presentations and techniques were fantastic. Kudos to the chefs who trained them and the hotels that sponsored the students and gave them the opportunity to get exposure in the industry at such a young age.
“I’d also like to say thank you to all the sponsors for investing in our youth because this goes a long way in terms of developing the next generation of up-and-coming chefs. The Tourism Enhancement Fund and the SLHTA remain firmly committed to nurturing local talent. This is crucial to the development of our industry, that’s why wherever we discover this talent, especially among young people, we’re always eager to support them, and look forward to great things from them.”
The competition was sponsored by CPJ St Lucia Ltd, RJB Hotel Supplies, Bank of St. Lucia, Courts St Lucia Ltd and the Tourism Enhancement Fund.