Holmesglen chefs shine on the national stage

Holmesglen chefs

Holmesglen teachers impressed a panel of industry judges and outshone interstate teams in an impressive display at the Australian Culinary Federation Restaurant Challenge.

Held at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Holmesglen’s reputation as a quality provider of hospitality training took centre stage at the event run together with Foodservice Australia.

Andrew Ballard, who teaches at our Moorabbin campus, was crowned Professional Chef of the Year.

“It is Australia’s most prestigious culinary title for an individual chef, so it is a real honour to receive this award,” he said.

While Andrew’s team – composed of chefs from his restaurant, Provenance – placed second in the team category.

Our Holmesglen Glen Waverley campus team continued the culinary excellence in third place. The team featured chefs Trevor Jenkins, Targ Howarth, Ola Alkateb, and Rebecca Walker.

Teams were tasked with cooking and serving a two-course menu for 44 guests and judges.

Holmesglen competed against participants from New South Wales, Queensland and Tasmania.

Trevor Jenkins (who also made the semi-finals of the Professional Chef of the Year category) says being a TAFE teacher has grown his skills and love of the hospitality industry.

“Being a teacher has allowed my passion for the industry to grow even stronger.

“The hospitality industry is like one big family. To compete with your peers is a great way to strengthen comradery, friendships, and a bit of healthy competition is always good to push you to be better. It also adds to the fun when you have your colleagues by your side.”

ACF Restaurant Challenge team

Andrew and Trevor’s advice for aspiring chefs

Both Andrew and Trevor say to become a successful chef, you should embrace new learning opportunities and be curious about the profession you want to make your career.

“Ask lots and lots of questions,” Andrew says. “I learn something every time I step into a kitchen. Also, align yourself with the most enthusiastic employer you can find. Remember that good employers will hire, first and foremost, on attitude and passion.”

Trevor says it's important to maintain patience and wellbeing when developing your craft.

“Surround yourself with like-minded people that love food and immerse yourself in every aspect of what the industry has to offer.

“Take the time to master the basics and be patient. Always try to be calm, the kitchen is a stressful place, so do your best not to make it more stressful."

Study a Hospitality course at Holmesglen

Holmesglen offers certificate, diploma and degree qualifications across the spectrum of hospitality training.

Many include full or part-time delivery and apprenticeship and non-apprenticeship options. Students wanting to step into the kitchen can explore their culinary passions with commercial cookery or patisserie courses.

Learners who aim to pursue front-of-house, food and beverage, operations or management roles can consider hospitality and hospitality management courses.

Find out more about our leading hospitality training and your study and career options on our hospitality, tourism and events courses page

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