In December 2022, Outrigger Fiji Beach Resort celebrated multiple wins at the Fiji Salon Culinaire 2022. The two-day event saw participants battling three categories, including the Chef of the Year award.
In conjunction with HOTEC, the competition saw Outrigger’s Fijian chefs walking away with wins in all three major categories: Chef of the Year, Junior Chef of the Year, and Pastry Chef of the Year.
Under the leadership of the Executive Chef at Outrigger, Priya Darshani, the resort’s kitchen team strive for excellence in all areas of their work – fostering and growing local talent to provide an exceptional experience for guests.
Akshay Goundar - Chef of the Year
The judges described Goundar as the finest and most skilful young chef they had seen all year. Winning the Junior Chef of the Year in 2016 during the Moffat Salon Culinaire, Goundar has worked at the resort since 2014 – now the head of the resort’s steak-house, Sundowner Bar and Grill.
Jeremiah Rafai - Junior Chef of the Year
For a second year in a row, Rafai has taken home the Junior Chef award – acing the criteria of a salad creation, a classic local dish with a modern twist, and a main course and desserts. After starting as a trainee chef, Rafai has worked his way up to oversee the resort’s restaurant Ivi as chef de partie.
Lina Toge - Pastry Chef of the Year
Toge also received a back-to-back win – previously taking home Pastry Chef of the Year in 2019. As the Junior Sous Chef at Outrigger’s, Toge completed the categories of a bread and pastry display, a classic local dessert with a modern twist, and cake decoration.