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Salon Culinaire: Thoughts of the chefs

We find out what Salon Culinaire entrants thought of the competition
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Luke Wonnacott, Oceana Atlantic
Luke Wonnacott, Oceana Atlantic
Joseph Mugalo, Burj Al Arab
Joseph Mugalo, Burj Al Arab
Alishan Fernando, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray
Alishan Fernando, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray
Sharon Transfiguracion, JW Marriott Hotel
Sharon Transfiguracion, JW Marriott Hotel
Danendra Ssachithra, Radisson Blu Dubai Creek
Danendra Ssachithra, Radisson Blu Dubai Creek
Arindam Sarkar, Park Rotana and Park Arjaan by Rotana
Arindam Sarkar, Park Rotana and Park Arjaan by Rotana
Bernard Devianto, JW Marriott Hotel
Bernard Devianto, JW Marriott Hotel
Mahesh Aruna Peters, The Address Downtown
Mahesh Aruna Peters, The Address Downtown

Hotelier's James Clarey asked the 2012 Salon Culinaire entrants about the competition at Gulfood. Here's what they said: 

Luke Wonnacott, Oceana Atlantic

What class have you entered?
Salmon practical cooking

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How did it go?
Well, I executed the dish properly, the judges’ comments were good, so it’s been a really good day.

What have you learnt from competing?
A few tips for next time. A competition like this is very different to working in a proper kitchen. It’s a completely different kitchen, so you have to make life as easy for yourself as possible.

Will you be here again next year?
Yes, I’ve really enjoyed the experience, it’s been great.

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Joseph Mugalo, Burj Al Arab

Which class have you entered?
Dressed lamb

How did it go?
It was lovely. Great presentation, I loved the dish and the judges loved it too. I got some great comments. One was that he would love to take the idea from me and sell it in his restaurant.

Is this your first year?
No, this is my second year here.

What have you learnt from competing?
I learnt a lot of things about team work, to go through the whole thing from start to finish.

Will you be back for the next one?
Absolutely, I’ve really enjoyed it.

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Alishan Fernando, Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

Which class have you entered?
Five-course gourmet dinner menu

How did it go?
It was good, I worked all night for this, but I did the best I could and I am very happy.

Is this the first time you’ve entered Salon Culinaire?
Yes, it is the very first time I have done this, and I am so happy with it.

What have you learned?
I have learnt that I need to properly finalise everything perfectly to present it.

Will you be back next year?
Yes, I learnt my lessons this year, and will be back and better for the next.

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Sharon Transfiguracion, JW Marriott Hotel

Which class have you entered?
Five-course gourmet

How did it go?
It went well, the judges were fair enough but they were looking for specific things on your plate. They look at the very small details.

Did you win any medals?
No, I didn’t get anything, but this is my first time and I didn’t know how these things worked.

What have you learnt from competing?
A lot! Far too much for one day!

Will you be back next year?
Definitely!

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Danendra Ssachithra, Radisson Blu Dubai Creek

What class have you entered?
Five-course gourmet dinner menu

How did they go?
Not bad, we didn’t get the feedback yet but I am hoping it went well.

What have you learnt today?
This is my first time participating in the Middle East, I was in Sri Lanka for the last one. Even if I don’t get a medal, I have benefitted a lot.

Will you be here next year?
Definitely, it’s been great!

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Arindam Sarkar, Park Rotana and Park Arjaan by Rotana

Which class have you entered?
Five-course gourmet dinner menu

How did it go?
It was very well judged because of their experience. They gave good guidance for future attempts, good judgment to make you do better in future. I feel I will work much better.

What have you learnt from the experience?
That you have to work hard, you have to have specific aims.

Will you be back again next year?
Of course, I am enjoying it! I came from Abu Dhabi yesterday (21 Feb) night and started this, it was easily done.

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Bernard Devianto, JW Marriott Hotel

Which class have you entered?
Five-course dinner menu

How did it go?
I don’t know yet, I still have to wait for the judges’ verdict!

What have you learnt from competing?
So many things! I have learnt everything about cakes and deserts.

Is this your first time here?
No, I have been here three years.

Will you be here again next year?
Yes, I will definitely will be!

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Mahesh Aruna Peters, The Address Downtown

Which class have you entered?
Fish and seafood, and lamb.

How did they go?
I got a bronze for the lamb!

What have you learnt from the experience?
Of course I have learnt so many new things. So much knowledge.

Will you be here again next year?
I will be, certainly!

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