The 39th Grand Cordon d’Or of French Cuisine will be held on Wednesday 20 March at Monaco’s Vocational and Catering School. The culinary competition has been organised at the initiative of the association bearing the same name, its President Gilles Brunner, and members of the Magisterial Council. It gives final-year students at catering colleges (studying for technological or professional baccalaureates or BTS qualifications) the chance to put into practice the academic and vocational skills they have learned, to compete against each other and to broaden their imaginations and sense of taste.
The competition runs on the following principle: “invitations” are sent to European catering colleges to encourage students who wish to do so to take part in a culinary contest where they have to prepare two set dishes. This year, the dishes are:
- Stuffed sea bass served with three accompaniments, to include one using mussels (mandatory) and two of their own design, and an emulsified sauce
- A traditional tarte Tatin
Six students were chosen based on their applications, representing catering colleges in Mauritius, Mexico, Marseille, Bastia, Saint Chély d’Apchet and Monaco.
In advance of the competition, each student will send to Monaco’s Vocational and Catering School a list of their ingredients and a description of the techniques used in preparing their recipes. They will then have four hours to make their two dishes.
Their work will be judged by two panels, one “technical” panel comprising chefs who will be in the kitchens watching as the students prepare their dishes, and a second “tasting” panel made up of gourmets and fine dining professionals, whose job will be to evaluate the presentation and taste. Criteria including budget management, hygiene, organisation, methodology and adherence to culinary techniques will also be taken into account.
This year, Didier Anies, winner of the Meilleur Ouvrier de France 2000 award and Executive Chef for the Hotel Fairmont in Monaco, has agreed to be the sponsor for the 2019 competitors and will very kindly be sharing his utmost professionalism and vast experience with the students participating in the 39th Grand Cordon d’Or of French Cuisine.
The prize giving will begin at 6.30 pm at Monaco’s Vocational and Catering School, and will be followed by a gourmet dinner served by the students and their teachers at 7.30 pm.