Executive chef David Joyce has been announced as the winner of Aramark Ireland's Chef of the Year 2023.
The annual competition, which showcases the talent within Aramark across Ireland, saw eight Aramark chefs compete for the prize through a series of cooking challenges.
The competition featured a day of meals and culinary talent, where the independently chosen national finalists were invited to showcase their skills.
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The competing chefs were challenged to prepare, cook and present two portions of a main course dish, using Irish beef fillet as the key ingredient, and two portions of a dessert, incorporating a hot souffle as the key ingredient, all within 90 minutes. The competitors were encouraged to show as many skills as possible within the time, while showcasing their own unique understanding of taste and flavour. All dishes were judged by a panel that included Michelin Star chef Ross Lewis.
Aramark's executive chef, David Joyce, was acknowledged as the winner after impressing the judging panel with his main dish, which consisted of beef fillet, with mushroom tart, Lindi pepper, mushroom puree, Cep Dantel and a sauce sauternes. For dessert, he prepared a strawberry souffle and consommé, accompanied by sheep yogurt ice cream.
Second place was awarded to Adam Foster, who is chef at Avoca Malahide. Adam presented a seared fillet of Irish beef, with garlic and thyme fondant potato, shallot puree, roasted carrot puree and a red wine reduction. This was followed by a dessert of hot raspberry souffle with mascarpone and vanilla bean cream. Both Joyce and Foster were rewarded for demonstrating an outstanding understanding of texture, flavour, layers and colour to deliver culinary excellence.
Both Joyce and Foster will travel to Chile to represent Aramark Ireland at the Aramark International Chefs Cup in April. This competition is open to chefs who are currently employed by Aramark Corporate Catering services, who are the organisers of the competition.
Following the announcement, Joyce commented, "I would like to thank the team at Aramark and the panel of judges for naming me Aramark Ireland's Chef of the Year 2023. I am honoured to have won and to be given the opportunity to represent Ireland at the Aramark International Chefs Cup. The competition highlights the best part of the hospitality industry - creating and sharing food. Well done to everyone who participated today."
Derek Reilly, executive director of culinary and craft development for Aramark and Avoca chaired the judging panel. He said: "I was blown away by the incredibly high standard of food presented by all eight chefs at this year’s competition. The meals were prepared immaculately and were a great showcase of the quality of Irish produce, as well as the skills of the chefs. Congratulations to the winners, David and Adam, and well done to all involved in this fantastic celebration of food."
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