Food & Hotel Asia 2012 Day 3 – Asian Pastry Cup Day 2 & Finale
Day 2 at the Asian Pastry Cup saw another 5 teams competing, starting from 6.45am in the morning. Surely the teams would have reached the kitchens even before that to make sure that they are able to seize and squeeze every second on the clock to churn out plated desserts, chocolate cakes, and finally, sugar and chocolate showpieces all in quick successions of one item from the other. The pacing was intense as every patissier in those 5 kitchens worked under immense pressure to race against time. It is not just a competition against one another, but really to pit against oneself, to testify their own individual level of creativity, pastry technique, capabilities in planning, together with a myriad of kitchen skills, and mostly important, ability to shine as an outstanding patissier. Read on to see if twhich team has what it takes to win the much-coveted Asian Pastry Cup 2012.
First to be rolled out are the plated desserts. A sample would be presented to the panel of judges for viewing, before being individually served. The panel of judges would include the founder and President of Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie, Chef Gabriel Paillasson, with International President of Coupe du Monde de la Patisserie Chef Norihiko Terai, as well as the team jury members from the 11 participating teams in Asian Pastry Cup 2012.
Judges tallying a sampling of Team Philippines’ plated dessert
Chef Paillasson carefully removing the upper hemispherical piece of Team Philippine’s plated dessert.
Carefully inspecting its construction, against the light, like the workings of a professional gem appraiser.
And taking the sampling…
Panel of media judges for the “Media Prize”
Scrutinising the layout before setting to sample.
Jury members from Team Sri Lanka (left) and Team Thailand (right). Its Thailand’s virginal voyage to the Asian Pastry Cup this year round. Hope that it would be the first of many to come.
Chef Paillasson once again surveying the plated dessert from Team Sri Lanka being served to him. The flavours employed were described as being typical South Asian, with a liberal use of coconut.
Taking a sampling…
A quick exchange with Chef Norihiko afterwards. That look on his face leaves much to wonder…
Chef Norihiko takes a second bite henceafter, seemingly to affirm what Chef Paillasson transpired…
Jury members from Teams Indonesia and Malaysia penning their scores…
Once again, a quick exchange of words. I wonder if this is a good thing altogether. Shouldn’t judging be unbiased? Then again, perhaps I’m the only one being unprofessional here.
The emcee looking very interested at Team Philippines’ plated dessert, which as raspberries and pop rocks incorporated.
Exchange of words with Chef Gael Etrillard, from the pastry division of Raffles Hotel Singapore.
Team Australia hard at work in the kitchen.
Ensuring that each plate shines like a new penny before the judges.
Cleaning the plates very very thoroughly, leaving nothing to chance…
Chef Buddy Trinidad, coach for team Philippines sharing a light moment.
And the judging continues with the rest of the plated dessert and later, the chocolate cakes… I shan’t bore you with the subsequent photos as they are somewhat repetitive. But I just love the facial expressions some of these judges make after taking their first plunge at the desserts and cakes presented before them. Some would be too sensitive and perhaps offensive to be showcased here.
Then we moved on to the display of chocolate and sugar showpieces.
Here are the works from Team India, themed in celebration for India’s first Formula One race this year seemingly. I can hardly think of a notion less adequate.
Team India’s chocolate showpiece, with their plated desserts which featured the use of curds, which is a signature base condiment for many Indian dishes. Interesting yes, but I would think of the level of acceptability of the judges’ palate.
Sugar showpiece with their chocolate cake.
Team Philippines’ showpieces themed “Kids at Play” . Prima facie, they looked too vertical, severely lacking in girth and volume.
Team Philippines’ sugar showpiece.
Team Philippines’ chocolate showpiece with their plated dessert
Team Sri lanka’s chocolate showpiece, which featured some kinda insect as the main theme.
The insect theme is mirrored in their sugar showpiece with ants.
Team New Zealand’s sugar showpiece. Simple elegance, but lacking in drama. inspired by the curves of a new frond of the New Zealand tree fern.
New Zealand’s Chocolate showpiece, featuring the Taniwha, a mythological creature in Moari folklore. It reminds very much of the tongue swaggling warrior dance performed by the NZ All Blacks before each game.
Showpieces from Team Australia
Sugar showpiece, themed after sea creatures owing to Australia’s coastal riches, famed by the Great Barrier Reef. The centre piece is some kinda anemone-like motif, which makes it the only showpiece in the whole competition which doesn’t incorporate any kind of floral theme. Two ballooned sugar dolphins also attest to their skills in sugar art.
Team Australia during a photoshoot.
Their sugar showpiece is themed after Sydney Harbour with New Year’s day fireworks. Pity that the motif of the Opera House is shadowed by the firework blossom in front.
Closeup on Team New Zealand’s sugar showpiece
Closeup on Team New Zealand’s chocolate showpiece
Closeup on Team Sri Lanka’s sugar showpiece
Closeup on Team Philippine’s sugar showpiece. To me, the flower is totally out of place. Wouldn’t a pinwheel of some sort, or a peek through a kleidoscope be more befitting to the theme of fun? Then again, that’s just me blabbering.
Closeup on Team India’s sugar showpiece. Same problem with Team Philippines, the blossom was incoherent with the rest of the theme.
Closeup on Team India’s chocolate showpiece. The racecar looks more like a shoe if you ask me.
Closeup on Team Australia’s sugar showpiece. Look carefully at the dolphins, and you would notice details like the wave-like illumination on their backs as they swim just before the breakline of the water. Down to the last impeccable detail. The texture profile of the whole piece was also amazing.
Closeup on Team Australia’s chocolate showpiece
Arena being laid out for the prize-giving ceremony
Much-coveted trophies looking like Easter eggs.
Arena filled with supporters from the various teams.
Emcee warming the crowd as the scores are being tallied.
Teams lining up for the results.
Chef Gabriel Paillasson giving a closing speech, translated by Mr Pierre Tabarié, Valrhona’s Brand Manager for the Asia-Pacific region – Hong Kong Representative Office
Chef Vincent Bourdin sharing a few words.
Most Promising Talent Award – Team Sri Lanka
Media Prize – Team Australia
Chef Christophe Megel, CEO of Global Chef Academy at Sunrice sharing a few words.
Best Team Spirit Award – Team Vietnam. This is the only team with 2 female members working behind the kitchen.
Chef Norihiko with a few words.
Translated by Chef Vincent Bourdin
Professional Skills Award – Team Philippines
Best Sugar Showpiece – Team Australia
Best Chocolate Showpiece – Team Malaysia
Best Plated Dessert – Team Singapore
Best Chocolate Cake – Team China
4th aka Passport to Lyon Prize – Team New Zealand. This is a “wild card” as it was not in the original “menu” of accolades. Special provision made by Chef Paillasson for New Zealand’s performance in this year’s competition despite being their first time in APC. Well done Team New Zealand! They should do the haka!
An outburst of emotions there. Well done, kiwis!
3rd aka Bronze Prize – Team Singapore. Team coach, Chef Yong looking visibly disappointed there. Oh well…
Congratulations from the two Coupe du Monde presidents.
2nd aka Silver Prize – Team Malaysia
Chef Vincent Bourdin with the two golden eggs…
1st aka Gold Prize – Team Australia. And they most certainly deserved to win. Their sugar showpiece is most stunning. My personal favorite for several reasons.
Congratulations Team Australia!
This shot is my personal favorite.
Celebrations always call for champagne!
Flying the Australian flag.
And with that the Asian Pastry Cup 2012 has come to a rousing closure. It was a great honour to have been there to see how all of it unravelled. Totally nerve-wrecking as well as all-inspiring experience I’m sure it is for the participants as well as all those who came to support. Well done Teams for making the event a success!
So til Coupe du Monde de la Pâtisserie 2013 next January in Lyon, its going to be merci beaucoup et au revoir!
Next feature, showcase of FHA2012’s Culinary Challenge. Stay tuned!