Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Culinary artist competes with the best

Cobram culinary creator Tristam May has stepped it up a notch, competing against 32 top chefs from around Australasia in Melbourne earlier this week.

RANDALL JOHNSTON March 1, 2013 4:56am

Cobram Grand Central Chef Tristam May (centre) with his latest unique desert creation alongside Grand Central head chef David Rathbone and owner Kate Frauenfelder.

Cobram culinary creator Tristam May has stepped it up a notch, competing against 32 top chefs from around Australasia in Melbourne earlier this week.

Mr May was one of just eight elite chefs to be selected from Victoria to take part in the competition.

It was a mango mouse and vanilla bavoir with shortcrust pastry all resembling a serving of bacon and eggs that caught the selectors’ attention and earned Mr May an all-expenses paid trip to Melbourne where he was wined and dined at some of the city’s top award-winning restaurants.

‘‘I just tried my best to come up with something genuine, instead of just something you see every day,’’ Mr May said of his inspired creation.

‘‘I have been practising (making the dessert).

‘‘I was a little nervous last week, it’s a pretty awesome opportunity.’’

The results are yet to be announced but if he wins, Mr May will be awarded an international culinary scholarship ‘‘tailored to his individual aspirations as a professional chef’’.

The Fonterra Proud to be a Chef competition is also designed to be a mentorship program, and included three days of master classes delivered by world-leading chefs and industry experts.

Fonterra Proud to be a Chef co-ordinator Carolyn Plummer said the standard of entrants this year was ‘‘unbelievably’’ high and a record number of applications were received.

‘‘This mentorship program provides apprentice chefs with an exciting and unique opportunity outside their regular work environment where they can be taught and inspired by some of Australia’s top industry icons,’’ she said.

2012 Fonterra Proud to be a Chef winner Sonja Dawson said the competition was a huge boost to her career.

Ms Dawson received placements in New York City at what is currently the sixth highest-ranking fine dining restaurant in the world.

Industry greats such as MasterChef judge George Calombaris have previously won the competition, which is in its 14th year.

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