AUT University’s top hospitality students showcased their talents recently for New Zealand’s crème de la crème of restaurateurs, food critics and writers.
The Cuisine NZ Restaurant of the Year awards 2010 represent the best places to eat from across the country. This year’s supreme winner was Riverstone Kitchen in Oamaru, the first time a South Island restaurant has taken out the top prize.
The cocktail event, hosted at Coutts Mercedes Benz in Auckland, hosted about 200 guests who represented well known chefs, restaurateurs, food writers and judges.
Some of the tasty morsels included: tuna tartare with mirin and wasabi tobico, curried baby octopus, agria potato fritters, Manukau smoked salmon with beetroot relish and Brazilian cheese bread with avocado and tomato salsa.
The University’s School of Hospitality and Tourism has two restaurants on campus- Piko and Four Seasons- where students train in the kitchens and front of house. Both are open to the public for lunch and dinner during semester time and are available to hire for functions.
The School offers programmes in culinary arts, hospitality management, patisserie, event management, and food and beverage. Catering for an event such as the Cuisine restaurant awards is the ideal way to give students real life industry experience before they graduate says Head of Culinary Arts, John Kelly.
“We aim to give students as much practical experience as possible and it was an honour for us to work with cuisine at such a prestigious event but I also think it shows the respect with which the industry regards our programmes.”
Cuisine editor, Sarah Nicholson, says the dedicated team at AUT contributed to a very successful night at the Cuisine NZ Restaurant of the Year Awards. “The delicious party food was creative, fresh and well cooked, and the service enthusiastic and friendly.”