Thursday 15 August 2013
UCOL Wairarapa cooks ready for the heat
There will be some hot competition for UCOL Wairarapa cooks at the New Zealand Culinary fare in Auckland early next
Cookery students Thomas Pepper and Cheryl-Kay Phillips will cook in the live kitchen showdowns that take place between
18 – 20 August.
The competition is a step up from the Hawkes Bay Salon Culinaire that the pair contested so successfully in May.
Thomas will be cooking in the Trainee Pasta class, and Cheryl-Kay will compete against industry chefs in the Open Beef
class. Both have one hour to produce four identical Main dishes for judging.
UCOL Wairarapa cookery lecturer Damian Peeti says both Thomas and Cheryl-Kay are very keen, now they have had a ‘taste’
of competing in a live cooking competition.
“They have been training for a couple of weeks now, so they are well on track,” say Damian. This event is a much bigger
audience than they have ever experienced, which is great for their future pathways.”
Both students are Youth Guarantee students who started their study at UCOL under the government funded scheme.
They both gained their Certificate in Professional Cookery Level 3 last semester, and are now doing a Certificate in
Baking and Pastry Level 3.
Their lecturer Damian is not only competing in the Open Lamb class but also acting as Floor Manager at the prestigious
Nestlé Toque d’Or competition.
The Toque d’Or is the country’s premier student culinary and restaurant service competition run annually at the Culinary
“My role will be to observe all practical skills and competencies on the floor, from setting up, preparation and
breaking down concluding the kitchen competition,” says Damian.
Three Professional Cookery students and lecturer from UCOL’s Palmerston North campus will also travel to Auckland to
compete. They are Lauren Birch (Venison Rack Open and Wine and Food match classes), Cat Drinnan (Fish and Seafood Open)
and Kirsten Moffitt (Trainee Soup).
Palmerston North UCOL Cookery lecturer Warren McKenzie will compete in the Open Beef class and defend the Open Duck
title that he won last year.