During the last week of training, each contestant had the opportunity to practice their culinary skills and to prepare to cook for the Judges’ Panel Night. At the Judges’ Panel Night on 21 June 2019 each contestant was required to prepare 4 dishes – sushi, sashimi, California maki and a special creation dish – and present them to the 12 judges who scored them on appearance and taste.
All of the contestants were awarded with a certificate of achievement from Chef Hagiwara on the last day of training.
The finalist who received the highest score, accumulated from the first day of training to the Judges’ Panel Night, was Ms. Kanitta Pongaekkawat from Panyapiwat Institute of Management and she was presented with the winner’s trophy, a specially designed Sake Box shaped as Mount Fuji, which the Japanese recognise as ‘Ichi Ban’ or Number One, by Chef Hagiwara. Ms. Kanitta Pongaekkawat also received the highlight prize of a 9-day educational trip to Hotel Okura Amsterdam in the Netherlands.
The trip, valued at more than Baht 100,000, includes air tickets, 8 nights’ accommodation at Hotel Okura Amsterdam, luncheon and dinner at Michelin starred restaurants (Yamazato restaurant and Ciel Bleu restaurant), day trips in Amsterdam, visa and travel insurance, pocket money and, best of all, the opportunity to train under two-star Michelin Chef Onno Kokmeijer. Chef Onno holds the title SVH Meesterchef (master chef), awarded by the Dutch hospitality organisation Stichting Vakbekwaamheid Horeca.
SVH strives to promote professional knowledge in the hospitality industry and awards ‘master’ titles in five categories including chefs, hosts and sommeliers. The SVH ‘master’ title is the highest honour awarded by the Dutch hospitality industry. The runners-up in the cooking competition were rewarded with vouchers for a 1-night stay at The Okura Prestige Bangkok, inclusive of breakfast for 2 persons.