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Local chefs ignite their culinary careers in national award

RISING local culinary stars Jomarie Gealon, 24, and Adam Lockhart, 23, have cooked, braised and smoked their way to representing Tasmania in the national finals of the 2019 Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat Award, to be held in Sydney in September.

The duo, who both work at the Country Club, impressed Tasmanian judges with their menu in the regional finals at TasTAFE’s Drysdale Campus, winning silver and the chance to represent their state on a national level.

No stranger to the culinary arena, Mr Gealon – a 2018 TAS national finalist – said he was “thrilled” with his performance alongside chef colleague and teammate, Mr Lockhart.

“The other teams put up some great dishes, so I wasn’t sure we’d have a chance, but here we are, through to the finals,” he said.

“I think that we worked well as a team and I’m looking forward to the next challenge in Sydney, we’re going to give it everything we’ve got.”

Gealon and Lockhart created a two-course menu of sous vide spiced lamb rump with smoked onion puree, confit sweet potato, macerated currants, burnt leek, fried kale, pickled kohlrabi and red wine jus for their main and a white chocolate crème de pepper with white chocolate mousse, white chocolate cinnamon sponge, soft peanut brownie, peanut oats and salted caramel sauce for their dessert course.

The judging panel awarded them a silver medal, scored against globally recognised culinary standards.

Executive chef and Nestlé Professional head judge Mark Clayton said the Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat Award existed to support the professional development of young chefs.

“This award is about pushing yourself to be a better chef,” he said.

“It offers young talent the opportunity to accelerate their culinary journey.”

As Australia’s longest running culinary competition for young chefs, the Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat Award has been running for 54 years, offering the next generation of young chef talent a platform to create new opportunities, learn valuable skills and connect with industry peers in the culinary industry.

The 2019 national winning team will be awarded a $15,000 culinary trip of a lifetime to North America.

For more information or the follow the action, visit www.facebook.com/goldenchefs.

Caption: Young chefs Adam Lockhart, left, and Jomarie Gealon.

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