Prior to New Zealand winning the match against France in the Rugby World Cup clash on the 24th September; New Zealand also beat France in a different kind of sporting battle.
The Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Challenge: New Zealand vs. France was held on the 22nd September at The Cloud on Auckland’s waterfront where Al Brown and teammate, former All Black captain Tana Umaga faced Chef Phillipe Clergue, Chef de Cuisine of Le Cordon Bleu Paris, and former French captain Olivier Magne.
The two teams chopped, stirred and sautéed their way through three courses in the 90-minute match, with the New Zealand team emerging victorious.
Head judge Cath Hopkin, Institute Director of Le Cordon Bleu New Zealand, said there was only one or two points between each dish, but the Kiwis ultimately had the edge.
“It was an extremely close match, with both teams showing flawless technique and skill. The purity of flavours, textures on the plate and the demonstration of creativity was outstanding and a brilliant way to showcase fresh New Zealand ingredients,” she says.
The winning menu included seared scallops and scampi with celeriac and crisp prosciutto, lamb three ways with kumara fondant, a pea crush and cherry relish for the main, and an orange crème caramel with Cointreau raisins for dessert.
Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Challenge was MC’d by cookbook author Julie Biuso and the judging panel included food writer Annabel Langbein, restaurateur Michael Dearth, owner of the Grove and Cath Hopkin, Institute Director of Le Cordon Bleu New Zealand.
» View photos of the event