Zest Quest Asia Winners Take Their Culinary Tour of Japan



Standard Supplier 28th April 2017

Zest Quest Asia Winners Take Their Culinary Tour of Japan

Winners of the 2017 Zest Quest Asia contest have just returned from their culinary tour of Japan, the prize hosted by headline sponsor, Panasonic.

The ambitious menu, created by Hugo Montgomery, Peter Price and Alexander McLaren, with lecturer mentor, Lewis Walker, earned the team from University College Birmingham a trip of a lifetime to Japan which included a stay at the Tokyo Hilton with lessons in the art of preparing Teppanyaki, Sushi and Kaiseki with the hotel’s head chefs, and an early morning visit to the Tsukiji fish market and tuna auction. They then travelled by Shinkansen (Japanese Bullet Train) to Osaka, and visited Kobe, where they undertook an excursion to a beef farm, followed by a Wagyu beef dinner, a VIP tour of Panasonic’s technology centre to see some innovations for homes of the future, a Panasonic factory visit with hands-on demonstrations using new commercial equipment and a trip to Kyoto for an injection of history and culture.

This was UCB’s fourth consecutive year as entrants in the competition, founded by Cyrus Todiwala, which aims to help preserve the future of the Asian food and hospitality industry by nurturing the skills and knowledge of its cuisine among young British chefs.

Chef lecturer, Lewis Walker, commented; “I can’t deny we worked hard to win this complex, involved and challenging competition but it has most definitely been worth it and we have to thank Panasonic hugely for their generosity. There are so many learnings that we will take away from this experience, too many to mention, but perseverance pays. I’m now looking forward to being a part of the launch of the 2018 competition at the PACE conference in May and using our new-found knowledge to plan the canapés for next year’s gala dinner.”

Iain Phillips, Sales and Marketing Manager, Panasonic UK, added: “Zest Quest Asia’s aims mirror those of Panasonic, particularly in terms of creating value, contributing to society and supporting young people and it was very interesting to hear from these student chefs, first hand, of their aims and ambitions. During our visit to the factory they became involved in a discussion about an item of equipment that is in development and they have already made a difference as their comments were noted and talked about at a meeting later that day. This is exactly what our involvement in this competition is all about.”

The 2018 contest is being launched by Cyrus Todiwala and Lewis Walker at the PACE Conference on May 3rd at the Hilton Hotel, Liverpool. For more information, you can visit zestquestasia.com.

In these challenging times…

…the hospitality landscape has dramatically changed in the last two months, and with that our advertising revenues have all but expired, significantly impacting our business. Despite having to furlough a large portion of our staff, we are still delivering the valuable content and honest information, which hundreds of thousands of you come to The Staff Canteen for. We believe we have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs, are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector.

Your financial support means we remain independent and open to all. We were launched by a chef and remain the voice of chefs and other hospitality professionals.

We need your support to keep delivering the products and content that you love, giving you the platform to share opinions and inspiration. Every contribution whether big or small, means so much.
Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you