It's over for another two years. Bocuse D'or 2009 ended today. Well, this morning actually. At 1 am this morning (10 am local time in Lyon) Team Canada -- led by chef David Wong -- put years of anticipation into action.
The live feed from Lyon was working today, thank god. Otherwise I might've pulled out my hair. Despite the hellish chase day I had at work, I still managed to catch a glimpse of the Canadian team at work. It was so great watching David and his commis Grace Pineda finally live in action after watching two of their practice runs. Somehow everytime I had a chance to look up, there they were. I saw their fish and meat platter go out and I thought, "I actually know how much went into that!" The judges get but a glimpse of each platter. Frankly, with that much work it should've gone into a museum. But what do I know.
Despite my dislike for the two hackneyed MCs (could they have been any more obnoxious and self absorbed?) the English MC did manage to give a shoutout to the Canadian team by holding up the hockey jersey worn by the Canadian fans.
I managed to get some photos from the event, unfortunately none of Team Canada in action. Oh well. Above is a photo featuring honorary president Daniel Boulud and competition founder and food god Paul Bocuse. I got shivers remembering my own encounter with Boulud (there's a posting about this somewhere back in this blog).
Side note: What's with the music? Is this a euro thing? I'm pretty sure we could find some better music to go with the world class food. I wouldn't want to eat McDonald's with that shit blaring.
I love the fans though. They were all so damn happy to be there! And all of them screaming their heads off.
The fact the chefs were able to work with the Euro cheese music and the screaming fans is amazing. As you'll see in the following pics, there is no room for error. The judges literally have seconds to see your food on the platter and they're tasting twenty four dishes a DAY. And all these chefs are at the top of their game.
I wish I knew what country's food these were. There are no IDs from the Bocuse photo site. Boo. I know what you're thinking. You want to reach through your screen and eat this with your bare hands. It's ok. We're all thinking that.
Just to show the level of detail. Again, I have no idea what country this chef is from or what he's coating his dish with. But I'll bet anything it's absolutely mouth watering. You should probably go get something to eat if your keyboard is coated with drool at this point.
Another side note: as I'm writing this I'm eating frozen fries. They're not currently frozen, I baked them obviously. But still. Somehow it feels sacrilegious to write this while eating something so uncouth. Le sigh.
Norway's first place fish platter. I kinda think it's a cheat that one of the must use ingredients at this year's event was Norwegian cod...but it IS a gorgeous platter.
Norway's gold standard meat platter. Time to get a napkin.
How could I blog about this without mentioning the winners? Of course, Norway won gold...Sweden won silver...and France got the bronze. I know. I did it in the reverse order I'm supposed to do it in. Suck it. It's my blog.
And what you REALLY want to know is...how did Canada do? We placed ninth out of 24. The Americans placed 6th. South Korea placed 24th.
Let me just say...I'm so immensely proud of our team. Having seen them in action and tasted the food, they're incredible competitors. It was a thrill to see them. Extra congrats go to Grace Pineda for winning Best Commis as awarded by the Academy of Bocuse D'or winners. That's a testament to the level of their teamwork.
I do have to say, the Norwegian winner Geir Skeie was absolutely adorable in victory. He was so ecstatic you couldn't help but feel that enthusiasm. Then someone who I can only imagine was his wife stood with him and she looked like the happiest woman on the planet. It was the sweetest thing ever. They looked like overjoyed teenagers.
On the flipside, the French chef Phillipe Mille looked almost devastated to get third place. I guess if you bet your soul on winning gold I could see how you'd be disappointed. But it's not like they made rillettes out of your puppy so calm the fuck down.
I'm sure David and Grace and the rest of Team Canada are still celebrating and that they'll be celebrating late into the evening. They deserve it.