Chef Alex Chen heads to the Bocuse d’Or
PR NEWS – Chef Alex Chen is Moxie’s Culinary Architect, and on January 29th he will represent Canada at the Bocuse d’Or in Lyon, France, facing off against the world’s top chefs. The Bocuse d’Or is the world’s most prestigious culinary competition. It happens every two years in Lyon, France and is a two-day competition. 24 countries are permitted to participate; more than 56 compete to participate but only the top 24 make it. The Bocuse d’Or is widely regarded among chefs as both the Olympics and the Super Bowl of the culinary world. The Bocuse d’Or showcases the talents of the world’s top chefs in an intense, highly charged and extremely noisy atmosphere. The competition takes place in conjunction with SIRHA, the International Hotel Catering & Food Trade Exhibition and attracts over 160,000 visitors from around the world.
Some pics from last weeks preview.
On the day of the competition, Alex is permitted one Commis in the kitchen with him who cannot be older then 22 years. Alex’s Commis is Jack Beers, who is 19 years old. Alex is also allowed a coach who is NOT permitted in the kitchen but will be at the window (adjacent to Ale’s cooking booth) supporting the team. Alex’s coach is Dan Olson, a notable chef that has worked with him in at the Beverly Hotels and before that at the Four Seasons in Chicago. At the Bocuse d’Or, Alex will be expected to create two protein dishes – one fish, one beef.
This year the fish is Turbot and European Blue Lobster. Turbot is a popular fish in Europe; it is white meaty fish with delicate flavour. The meat is Irish Beef filet. Alex will need to prepare a platter presentation for the beef and 14 plated dishes for the fish.
Each chef has five and a half hours to prepare the meat dish and the fish dish. Both platters must be presented with a free choice of three different garnishes and must contain a total of twelve servings. Two portions are plated for presentation and for the official photograph. One of the garnishes must include an ingredient that is from the participant’s country (kept secret until the day of the competition).
Alex departs for France on January 22. Upon his arrival, he will have four practice days before he competes on January 29.
Alex was the former Executive Chef of the Beverly Hills hotel. He quit his position there to move back to Canada to compete at the Bocuse d’Or. Since moving back he joined Moxie’s as their Culinary Architect.
The Bocuse d’Or was started by Paul Bocuse, who is widely consider the Father of Nouvelle cuisine. Arguably the world’s first celebrity chef, his celebrity was not a result of TV but rather due to his reputation. He broke convention: in his restaurant he left his kitchen to speak to guests. He has also been the face of French cooking. His restaurant in France has held a 3 Michelin Star status for over 43 years consecutively. No other restaurant in the world has done that. In 2011, Paul Bocuse was honoured as Chef of the Century at the CIA in New York.
CHEF ALEX CHEN
Canada’s 2013 Bocuse d’Or Contender – Culinary Architect for Moxie’s Grill & Bar
Competing at the level demanded by the Bocuse d’Or requires limitless patience, extreme dedication, and thousands of hours spent in training and coaching. First and foremost, though, it needs a chef who can compete shoulder to shoulder with the best chefs in the world and whose talents and unwavering commitment set him or her apart.
For Canada, that chef is Alex Chen. Chef Chen fell in love with cooking while growing up in Vancouver. His career has taken him across North America with positions in some of the continent’s finest hotels, including the Four Seasons Toronto, Four Seasons Chicago, and most recently as the Executive Chef of The Beverly Hills Hotel and Bungalows in Hollywood. Chef Chen resigned his position at the Beverly Hills Hotel to pursue his dream of representing Canada at the Bocuse d’Or, and now resides in Vancouver where he is madly preparing for the competition.
After being named Canada’s Bocuse d’Or chef for 2013, he also assumed the role of Culinary Architect at Moxie’s Grill & Bar. Moxie’s is the title sponsor of Bocuse d’Or Team Canada, and this position allows Chef Chen to prepare for the competition and also directly impact menu development and staff training for the national restaurant group.