Toronto, February 26, 2019 — The Road to Lyon 2021 started today at the RC Show. The foodservice event hosted Team Canada’s national selection for the first time. Under the eye of six of the country’s noteworthy industry professionals, three contenders went head-to-head in a high-energy, two-hour battle for the chance to be our national culinary athlete at the next Bocuse d’Or, the Olympics of gastronomy, in Lyon (France) in January 2021.
Three chefs were selected amongst more than a dozen entrants by the organization’s newly formed Board of Directors to take part in the quest for the best. Faced with the challenge to reinvent duck tourtière – Bocuse style – the competitors showcased unapparelled technical skills and creative mastery in order to win the coveted title to represent Canada on the world stage. In the end, Samuel Sirois from ITHQ in Montréal, won the lead role and was awarded the reigns of Team Canada 2021.
“I am very excited to be the next contender to the Bocuse d’Or,” explained Sirois. “I’ve dreamt about this moment and am extremely proud to be part of the line-up of great chefs to represent Canada at the biggest culinary competition on the planet. I look forward to working with the Board and with chefs from coast to coast to put our best foot forward in 2021. I am committed to train and give my best for the next two years as the representative of the Canadian restaurant industry. Today is our first step towards the podium so we can show the world Canada’s food mastery and spotlight our unique local flavours.”
Modeled after the world-famous Bocuse d’Or, the event was judged by a panel composed of top industry names: Chef Lynn Crawford, Chef Alvin Leung, Mijune Pak (international food personality, founder of FollowMeFoodie and judge on Food Network’s Top Chef Canada and Iron Chef Canada), Chef Jean Pierre Challet, past Team Canada Chef Trevor Ritchie as well as Thomas Delannoy (President of the Board of Directors).
“We applaud the culinary talents, skills and creativity of all four participants,” concludes Thomas Delannoy, President of Bocuse d’Or Team Canada. “The national selection is the start of a two-year-long journey and we are excited to be training in La Belle Province starting Spring. We hope to continue to see the chefs and brands from across the country support the team and help us to provide Samuel Sirois the best chance to make it to the podium.”
Since 1987, it has been the organization’s goal to enable the best culinary talent to train for the privilege and honor to represent Canada at the Bocuse d’Or in Lyon (France). Though Canada has not yet stepped on the podium, the organization has made great strides over the last few years, going from the 21st position in 2015 to the 17th spot in 2017 to winning the 13th place this year, just a few points behind the top ten. Winning silver at the pre-qualifiers in Mexico City against 62 countries featuring the best of the best of the culinary art world who were trying to win one of the 24 golden tickets to Lyon, was a tremendous accomplishment for Team Canada. It was a great accolade that helped us garner the recognition and respect our restaurant industry deserves from the international culinary community. Our consistent performance at the Bocuse certainly shines a bright spotlight unto our country with the foodie tourism crowd from around the globe.
About Bocuse d’Or
Though the competition doesn’t get the attention it deserves here and in the U.S.A, the longest-running culinary competition in France is a pretty big deal among European gourmands. It has the potential to give a country international acclaim and increased interest from the global foodie tourism scene, not to mention putting a country’ delicacies in the limelight. Created by Paul Bocuse and Albert Romain in 1987, the initial mission of the competition was to help get chefs out of the kitchen and into the limelight. The World Cup of cookery talents is known to demand the highest standards of excellence, two years of training and a solid team to impress the Michelin star judges.
To schedule an interview with the winner or Thomas Delannoy or to get more information or high-res photos, please contact The PR Department at 416.535.3939 or [email protected].