Mumbai: The final winning team in the mega finale of the Everest Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge (EverestBKCC) emerged from T.S. Rahaman-Nhava and the winning students Ashok Kumar and Vishmad Singh walked up to the podium amidst thunderous applause to receive the trophy at the Hall of Culture – Nehru Centre in Mumbai.
The first runner up team named Everest Chhole Masala represented by Madhura Devsthali and Pratiksha Patil from Chefs Kitchen Institute of Culinary Arts & Hotel Management, Kolhapur and the second runner up team named Everest Jiralu Masala represented by Harpreet Ahuja and Faizan Ansari from State Institute of Hotel Management, Indore were felicitated by the guest of honour and representatives of the Sponsors.
Theme of the Challenge for budding chefs was Flavours of India.
The common intention of the multi-city event is to make Indian food popular across the globe and create awareness about its health benefits. To support the cause, Madhya Pradesh Tourism has associated with EverestBKCC as tourism partner.
Prominent chef Harpal Singh Sokhi was the guest of honour and his presence on the stage and his inspiring speech got waves of applause from the finalists from the seven cities and students from Mumbai’s Culinary institutions who were present in the hall.
Chef Harpal Singh Sokhi the Guest of Honour was happy to see the respect which chefs are getting nowadays from the society. He asked students to work hard, respect the profession and learn the how to cook best.
The award ceremony in Mumbai was attended by leading lights of the Culinary world and top representatives of the food and hospitality industry from Mumbai and other cities in India.
To provide exposure to the finalist of EverestBKCC, Master Classes were organized by Master Chef India 2020 Winner Abinas Nayak and Natasha Gandhi, one of the top five contestants of Master Chef India 2020.
The journey of EverestBKCC 2019-2020 started from Bengaluru in January 2020 and moved to Dehradun, Surat, Kolhapur, Bhopal, Pune and Mumbai, wherein more than 200 teams participated. The challenge was supported by industry associations viz Western Chefs Association (WICA) and Hospitality Purchasing Managers’ Forum (HPMF). The winners of all seven cities and three wild card entries were selected for the grand finale held at ITM Institute of Hotel Management, Navi Mumbai. There were five rounds of challenge that contestants had undergone to showcase their culinary skills before the jury comprising nine members of WICA namely Chef Nitin Shende, Chef Ranjan Rajani, Chef Ajay Devali, Chef Vivek Kadam, Chef Altamsh Patel, Chef Jerson Fernandez, Chef Tushar Malkani, Chef Dev Kasalkar and Chef Vasant Khot.
All of them addressed the finalists and gave them valuable advice on how to achieve success and retain the success with hard work and constant innovation.
The Challenge which began with 2 cities a year ago and is now the talk of the food industry and the hospitality industry with its huge success this year as a 7 city contest is heading for bigger success as the organisers have planned 15 cities in the next season.
Ekta Bhargava the publisher of Better Kitchen announced the 15 cities plan and said she was happy that her dream of bringing together the entire food industry, the hospitality industry, the culinary educational institutions, the ingredients manufacturers, kitchen appliances company and students who are the chefs of the future to participate in an unprecedented event that is aimed at celebrating the goodness and taste of Indian food.
“Our objective has been to give a fillip to new talent and innovation in the art of cooking. Also to spotlight the achievements of the chefs who deserve celebrity status and fame as they have taken Indian food to international level and have indirectly given a boost to tourists coming into India in search of its famous exotic food.”
She thanked all the sponsors, host instituted, supporting partners and students for making the challenge the grand success.
Dr. Nitin Nagrale, Founder and Secretary General of Hospitality Purchasing Managers’ Forum and Ekta Bhargava, publisher of Better Kitchen signed a MoU for five years to bridge the gap between hospitality purchase managers and brands, promote Indian food/products across globe, mentoring new talent, providing incubation centre for developing entrepreneurs and providing a communication platform to industry during the function.
The colourful event concluded with a choreographed pageant of dancers aptly representing the varied culture of India by the students of ITM IHM, Navi Mumbai.
The title sponsor of the culinary challenge was Everest Spices, uniform partner was Chefs Unlimited while edible oil partner was Idhayam. The gift partners were Wagh Bakri and United Distributors representing Tabasco, Barilla, Lotus and Loacker.