Sam joined NZSFW in November 2022 for our NZ Diploma in Cookery, Level 5 program. This is an Advanced cookery programme that focuses on ingredients and the understanding of advanced cookery techniques.
He has not only excelled at all his practicals and theory exams as a part of our course but also participated in two well known industry competitions. He was placed 2nd in the NZ Emerging Chef Competition 2023 and then went on to win the Bocuse d'Or Commis Chef competition held earlier this year.
Below is a snapshot of his journey at NZSFW.
New Zealand Chefs Emerging Chef Competition 2023
The New Zealand School of Food and Wine entered six students, currently studying the New Zealand Diploma of Cookery, in the NZ Chef's Emerging Chef of the Year Competition. We are delighted with the results. Sam Gradowski-Smith was placed 1st with Gold Medal, Sam Linstrom was placed 2nd with Silver Medal, Indira Devi, Matthias Wong and Damir Yunussov all gained bronze medals.
The New Zealand Chefs Championship for Emerging Chefs 2023 was held at Fine Foods and sponsored by Akaroa Salmon, House of Knives and Moffat New Zealand.
From Sam, 'I’d say the first thing that surprised me is that when we were planning our dishes out, I thought there was no way I was going to get 8 perfect plates of food up in 90mins. Once I had a proper plan and we did our practice runs and it was almost muscle memory and I managed to be within the time with 5 minutes to spare! It’s pretty cool to see how young people can do such amazing things, and when we can use our untapped potential so early in our careers.'
'I think the most daunting part was knowing who was in the audience, executive chefs from a lot of the top restaurants in Auckland and the judges. All of them watching your every move, however, it did encourage me to work a lot cleaner and gave a little adrenaline boost,' says Sam.
Read the full story here.
BOCUSE D'OR GLOBAL CHEF COMPETITION
Sam Linstorm took the top prize at the National Bocuse d'Or Commis selection.
Sam will be commis chef to Chef Will Mordido, NZ's candidate for this biennial World Chef Championship named after leading French chef Paul Bocuse.
Competitiors were tasked with a mystery box challenge containing Mt Cook Alpine Salmon and a selection of vegetables from Chevalier Produce. The second part of the competition also saw the chefs recreate a classic recipe, Poularde à la Financière” (Chicken Financière) sponsored by Waitoa Chicken, with fondant potato and braised cabbage.
Sam will join the team to compete at the upcoming Bocuse d'Or Asia Pacific Selection 2024.
Look at the full video here from the competition.