Wollongong chef Billy Fox has won gold at the Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat Awards in Sydney.
Mr Fox was one of four local chefs to win medals in the competition.
He will now face off against the best in Australia in the national competition in Melbourne this September.
“The national finals will be at Fine Food Australia which is Australia’s largest professional food show,” Mr Fox said.
Silver medalist William March, bronze medalist Angus Levoi and Mr Fox all studied Certificate III in Commercial Cookery at TAFE NSW Wollongong. While silver-medalist Ebony Hall studied Certificate III in Retail Baking.
The Golden Chef’s Hat Award is Australia’s longest running culinary competition.
It involved a cook-off that saw 26 two-chef teams step up to the plate and going all out to deliver their best dishes to the judges.
“We had 2.5 hours to prepare, cook and present a two course meal,” Mr Fox said.
The menu consisted of a main and dessert using set ingredients.
“Everyone has the same ingredients and same judges”.
Mr Fox was teamed up with Matt Wills from TAFE NSW Ryde. They worked so well together they were the only team to win gold.
“It all comes down to the food that you put up on the plate, and it shows that we gave it our best shot. We are looking forward to competing in Melbourne to potentially earn a foot in the door with industry professionals,” he said.
Mr Fox is now vice captain of the national youth culinary team which just started preparing for the Culinary Olympics in Germany in 2020.
They just recently returned from competing in a major Asian competition in Singarpore. “It is good to do these competitions to progress yourself”.
Executive chef and Nestlé Professional head judge Mark Clayton said Nestlé Golden Chef’s Hat Award was designed to support the professional development of young chefs by judging them on their culinary skills. “It is about pushing yourself to become a better chef and committing to your culinary journey”.
TAFE NSW Cookery team leader Sharon Altman said every competitor performed at an exceptional level.
“But Billy Fox and Matt Wills put their culinary skills on the table. These two TAFE NSW students will represent Sydney at the national final, which is a great result. This year’s national champions will be awarded a once in a lifetime culinary trip to Italy.”
TAFE NSW is presently taking semester two enrolments for Certificate III in Commercial Cookery.