Back in the my early days as an apprentice, cooking competitions where the way a chef could make his or her mark in the industry.
I would spend weeks, if not months, training, practicing and getting my skills honed ready for the big day. Whether it be a salon culinaire, a team competition or an individual cooking competition, to walk away with a medal and claim victory was the ultimate reward.
The camaraderie, respect and passion built and shared through these competitions became the foundations for my fulfilling career to date. They opened my eyes to the world of professional cooking. And expanded my network. The relationships I forget during this period of my career are still some of the most important relationships in my life.
My good friend and business partner George Calombaris and I met while competing against each other. Then we worked together and now we are proud to own restaurants together.
When approached by HOSTPLUS to be involved in Cook For Your Career, I automatically jumped at the chance.
I think anyone who is willing to invest in the future of our industry should have the industry’s full support. We at Maha take training seriously and all of my apprentices are put through a stringent training programme. We want them to be the best they can be and become the future leaders of not just our kitchens, but our industry as a whole.
I can’t wait to start getting my fingers dirty and selecting the short list of candidates for this year’s competition. If a Victorian entrant wins this competition, they will get the best possible training that my team at Maha and I can offer.
Dedication, passion and perseverance is all I am asking for you to bring to the table. We will provide you with the rest. Good luck to everyone who entered!
– Shane Delia