Panasonic has provided a 10-day trip of a lifetime to Japan for the winners of this year’s Zest Quest Asia competition.
Founded by Cyrus and Pervin Todiwala in collaboration with the Master Chefs of Great Britain, Zest Quest Asia aims to help preserve the future of the Asian food and hospitality industry by nurturing the skills and knowledge of its cuisine among young British chefs.
The 2017 winners were announced at a gala dinner and awards ceremony attended by 280 guests at the Hilton London Heathrow Airport Terminal 5 last week.
An ‘elegant and ambitious menu celebrating migration and modern British Asian Society’ was said to have propelled Hugo Montgomery, Peter Price and Alexander McLaren of University College Birmingham to victory. This was UCB’s fourth consecutive year of entering the competition.
Before announcing the grand prize of a trip to Japan, Iain Philips, Panasonic sales and marketing manager, revealed how Zest Quest Asia’s aims mirrored those of Panasonic, particularly in terms of creating value, contributing to society and supporting young people.
Also representing Panasonic at the event was Mariko Kanda of Panasonic Consumer Marketing Europe, who flew in from Frankfurt to be at the event. Panasonic has been a gold sponsor of Zest Quest Asia since its launch in 2014.
Phillips outlined the winners’ Japanese itinerary; they will fly to Tokyo, where they are booked to stay at the Tokyo Hilton for 4 days and among the activities planned for them are lessons in the art of preparing Teppanyaki, Sushi and Kaiseki with expert chefs in these fields, as well as an early morning visit to the Tsukiji Fish Market. They will then take the Shinkansen, or Japanese Bullet Train, to Osaka, and likewise visit Kobe and Kyoto where they will experience an excursion to a Kobe Beef farm and enjoy a private VIP tour of Panasonic’s technology centre and factory.
Before the end of the evening, gold sponsor Regale announced a £500 donation to Springboard’s FutureChef, now a supporting organisation of Zest Quest Asia and of which Cyrus Todiwala is an ambassador.