San Pellegrino Young Chef

The Most Exciting Talent Search for Chefs in the World

Chanwai Poon is the S.Pellegrino Young Chef Finalist for China

Chanwai Poon is the S.Pellegrino Young Chef Finalist for China

Chanwai Poon has been announced as China’s regional winner following a day of outstanding performances by nine of China’s most talented rising chefs at the nation’s S.Pellegrino Young Chef local competition. He will now advance to the Grand Finale, due to take place in May 2018.

The local competition, held on 14 September, 2017 at Miele’s House, Shanghai, gathered 10 of China’s most talented rising chefs, as selected by Alma, the world’s leading international educational and training centre for Italian cuisine. After four intense hours of cooking, each of their signature dishes was judged by a distinguished chefs jury.

Chefs Jacqueline Qiu, Riccardo La Perna, Stefan Stiller, Xiaoyan Zhou and Otto Wong each tasted and evaluated the dishes based on the competition’s five “Golden Rules”: ingredients, skill, genius, beauty and message.

It was the sous chef from Aurora restaurant at the Disney resort, Shanghai’s winning signature dish ‘Childhood’ (pan seared red mullet with texture of beetroot and shellfish sauce) that won the unanimous vote from the judges. Awarded the highest score, Chanwai was crowned the winner of the S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2017 Local Competition in China.

Chanwai Poon signature dish 'Childhood', pan seared red mullet with texture of beetroot and shellfish sauce

From Malaysia to Milan: the Chanwai’s story

Chanwai grew up in a small village in Malaysia, where one of the features of the local food culture is foraging for ingredients and cooking them yourself. His signature dish was an ode to his favourite childhood food – red mullet and chicken-infused flatbread, paired with his own Southeast Asian sauce. Through his dish, Chanwai wanted to show everyone how much he misses his homeland and how much he cherishes the memories of his childhood.

Following the announcement Chanwai said: "It is a great honour for me to win the S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2017 Local Competition in China. For me, it means not only earning a championship title in a cooking competition, but also an opportunity to stand in the global arena. Through this opportunity, I am able to learn from and compete with world-class, excellent chefs on behalf of China, and can also show the world the fascinating and profound culinary culture of the East."

S.Pellegrino Young Chef winner Chanwai Poon with mentor chef Jacqueline Qiu

Chanwai will benefit from the mentorship of chef Jacqueline Qiu, who will offer advice in perfecting his signature dish and presentation up until the Grand Finale.

The local competitions will continue across the globe until December 2017, when 21 Young Chefs will be announced as official finalists and proceed to the Grand Finale, and the chance to compete for the title of S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2018.

Read the interview with the winner Chanwai Poon

Read the interview with Jacqueline Qiu, the designated mentor chef for the S.Pellegrino Young Chef China Area.

21/07/2017