Peninsula chefs cook their way to Bocuse d’Or grand final

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Chisholm TAFE commercial cookery student Laura Skvor and Georgie Bass head chef Michael Cole will represent Australia at the Bocuse d’Or grand final in France next year after a stunning performance at the 2018 Asia Pacific heats.

The pair not only won their way through to the final in Lyon, Laura also picked up the Best Commis award at the heats in Guangzhou, China. The combination is certainly proving to be a winning recipe — after Michael chose Laura as his commis chef last year, they made the final of Bocuse d’Or Asia Pacific 2017 in Singapore.

Laura has been cooking since she was a young girl and started her first job in the kitchen as a baker’s/patisserie assistant at the age of 15. Her passion for food and cookery was fuelled when she and her brother, Mitch, featured on MKR in 2016, which she described as “an incredible experience that awakened my desire to be a great chef”.

Laura’s mentor at the Asia Pacific heats was Chisholm trainer Michael Simmons. “He is teaching solid foundations of cookery as well as inspiring us to continually be creative in our culinary endeavours and excel in our work kitchens,” Laura said.

Michael is equally proud of his students’ success. “Without the work of Chisholm’s commercial cookery and hospitality team, we would not have had the industry links for this to occur.

“I have been lucky enough to meet one of my heroes, Jerome Bocuse, the son of the great Paul Bocuse, as well as Pierre Rossi, who at 80 still works in his self-titled restaurant,” Michael added. “We are making great friends with world-famous chefs and competitors alike as we move through the competition.”

With chefs in hot demand, a growing restaurant trade and a nationwide skills shortage of qualified chefs, there’s never been a better time to enrol in a commercial cookery or hospitality course at Chisholm TAFE.