The President of WorldChefs Thomas Gugler is set to make a trip down under in July to attend the NZ Hospitality Championships and judge at Nestlé Toque d’Or. Appointed as President at last year’s WorldChefs Congress in Greece, it will be his first visit to New Zealand.

The acclaimed German chef has decades of experience judging culinary competitions around the world. He is a certified Executive Master Chef and has won hundreds of medals and awards from international cooking competitions globally. He currently works as the Corporate Director of Kitchens for AFS (Arabian Food Supplies) Naghi Group.

Now in its 27th year, Nestlé Toque d’Or is one of the most anticipated events of the year for the hospitality industry. Drawn from the country’s leading culinary arts institutes, the students are the best in their fields. Each team consists of one restaurant service and two culinary students. At the event, they must prepare and serve six covers of a three-course meal that they have perfected in the months leading up to the competition. They have just two-and-a-half-hours to complete the service.

This year’s judges are:

Thomas Gugler – President of WorldChefs

Darren Wright – Chef Owner at Chillingworth Rd

Chetan Pangam – Executive Chef Copthorne Hotel Oriental Bay

Jinu Abraham – Executive Chef CPG Hotel Group

Nancye Pirini – Executive Chef Novotel Auckland Airport

Damian Peeti – Cookery Lecturer at UCOL Whanganui

Richard Hingston – Head Chef Christchurch Casino

MacLean Fraser – Artisan Restaurant at the Bolton Hotel

Ganesh Khedekar – LSG SkyChefs

Janine Quaid – Renard Group

John Snowball – Tutor Cook Islands Tertiary Institute

Amanda Turner – Hospitality Tutor Northtec

Tony Stewart – Owner/Manager of Clooney Restaurant

They will assess competitors against WorldChefs judging criteria which covers a range of areas including: timing, taste, food preparation skills, service, presentation and hygiene.

The 27th Nestlé Toque d’Or will be held on Thursday 27 July 2017 at the Auckland Showgrounds. An awards dinner will be held later in the evening at the Heritage Auckland where the winning team will be announced.

Sponsors of this year’s event are: Nestlé Professional, Beef + Lamb New Zealand,, Akaroa Salmon, House of Knives and Moffat.