Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau returns to Mauritius

Excitement is building around the 2013 Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau at Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius. For guests this is a rare opportunity to sample food prepared by some of the world’s leading chefs all together in one stunning location.

Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival 2012, behind the scenes

Behind the scenes at 2012 festival

Top chefs, including three Michelin star-holder Patrick Berton and two Michelin-starred Eyvind Hellstrom, are lined up to judge the nail-biting culinary competition which runs from 18-26 March 2013.

A selection of six of Europe’s finest chefs will visit Mauritius to cook alongside six of our island chefs with the challenge of creating an award-winning menu from local produce.

Michelin star chefs at this year’s festival:

Dominique Loiseau, President of Jury at Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau

Dominique Loiseau

Judges of this year’s festival:

Highlights for guests include:

Guests at both Belle Mare Plage and Le Prince Maurice can get involved throughout the week with cooking demonstrations, special menus created by the visiting chefs and the thrilling prize-giving ceremony.

  • Special dinner at Le Prince Maurice on 18 March orchestrated by Chef Hellstrom
  • Special dinner at Belle Mare Plage on 20 March created by Chef Bertron
  • Morning cooking demonstration by Chef Bertron at Belle Mare Plage’s Citronnelle restaurant on 22 March
  • Gala dinner by the Constance chefs at the Deer Hunter restaurant, Belle Mare Plage on 23 March

The week will climax with a cook-off on the final day in which the island chefs will need to put into practice all they have learned from their Michelin-starred mentors to create the winning menu.

Bertron, a former protégé of chef Bernard Loiseau after whom the festival is named, has described the competition as being, ‘In the spirit of Loiseau’s legacy, it’s about sharing, it’s about training and it’s about transmission.’

Beach at Constance Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius

Beach at Belle Mare Plage

Foodie holidays in Mauritius

Indulge your passion for food and join us for the festival in Mauritius this year. Check availability and book now for Constance Belle Mare Plage and Constance Le Prince Maurice.

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Two days until the Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau

Excitement is building in Mauritius as the stage is set for our fabulous culinary celebration – the Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau 2012.

Island chefs in kitchen at Bernard Loiseau festival 2011

Island chefs in kitchen at Bernard Loiseau festival 2011

This week-long festival starts on Sunday 25 March. We’ll be posting every day to bring you the latest action, insight and photos as our 6 island chefs train with their European Michelin* chefs in preparation for the final cook-off competition on Thursday 29th and prize-giving on Saturday 31 March. We’ll also be a running a fun competition and lots more.

As the Michelin* chefs and judges fly into the island, it reads like a who’s who of the most accomplished stars in the world of food and wine.

The judges are:

  • Christopher Barber – former personal chef to the Prince of Wales
  • Enrico Bernardo – world class sommelier
  • Patrick Bertron – protege of Bernard Loiseau and world class chef
  • Serge Vieira – world class chef
  • Dominique Loiseau – wife of Bernard Loiseau and founder of the festival
  • Claus Meyer – co-owner of Noma

The  Michelin* chefs are:

  • Fabrine Biasolo
  • Patrick Bittner
  • Jacques Decoret
  • Dominique Gauthier
  • Angela Hartnett
  • David Johansen

 The island chefs are:

  • Ankur Daru – Ephelia, Seychelles
  • Kamlesh Doorjean – Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius
  • Nuwan Hiettiarachchi – Halaveli, Maldives
  • Ravish Mukri – Moofushi, Maldives
  • Jayram Seenanum – Belle Mare Plage, Mauritius
  • Hildy Sinon – Lemuria, Seychelles

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Preparing for the Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival 2012

Preparations are well under way already for the 7th Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival, due to take place in March next year.

Gala evening 2011

Gala evening 2011

Bruno Le Gac, our Corporate Executive Chef, gives us an insight into the organisation behind what’s become the most prestigious culinary event in the Indian Ocean.

On the last day of the Festival Culinaire, we’ve already started thinking ahead to next year’s event…

The festival has been extremely successful since it began in 2005. Every year, we work harder than ever to make the next edition even more memorable than the last.

What’s new for 2012?

In 2012, guests will be more involved in the competition, so they really feel the excitement of the competing teams. They’ll feel the anticipation and suspense ‘live’, like on the competitive cookery shows on TV.

Planning next year’s festival

At the end of each festival, we have a debrief with the organisation team to discuss which parts of the program to keep, what needs to be adjusted and what innovations we should introduce to the next festival. From this discussion, we begin to write the programme of events.

The internal organisation in the hotel is a huge task. Chef Dominique Grel and his team have become experts at this. But it’s always a lot of work and requires great dedication.

Choosing who takes part

Then we have to think about who’s going to take part.

The judges and the winners 2011

The judges and the winners 2011

The European chefs

It’s a difficult alchemy to pull off because the professionals that we invite need to connect and share something special together. It’s all about harmony.

Being a food-lover, I like to describe the sense of competition as being akin to chilli. A touch of it is nice to bring a bit of zing, but too much is overpowering and counter-productive…

There’s now a large family of chefs all over Europe who have become friends through the event, and who meet up regularly.

The judges

The choice of the jury members is also extremely important. They must be well respected professionals who can all get along well, even if they have different backgrounds and ideas about what makes a great dish.

The island chefs

Last but not least, we need to select the candidates from our hotels. For the first time this year, we’ll have participants from 6 of our resorts. The process has already begun.

  • First step is a questionnaire.
  • Second is a practical task where the chefs have to create two classical recipes ‘from the book’. No innovation required – it’s all about technical ability and precision.
  • Third and last step is a competition with two recipes to make. The ‘basket’ of ingredients is the same for all chefs, and they are free to prepare anything they want out of it. We want to see technique of course, but mainly we’re looking for talent, creativity, taste and elegance.

The winners earn the right to represent their hotel, their colleagues and their country during the final event that takes place in Mauritius in March.

Let the show begin!

Find out more

Don’t miss our article about the spirit of the Bernard Loiseau Culinary Festival.

And if you want to know more about the event, get in touch with us. You can get in contact with us via Twitter, post photos to Facebook or use the comments section below.