The Proud to be a Chef program recognises, develops and supports apprentice chefs to become the culinary leaders of tomorrow.
Investing in the foodservice industry at a grass roots level assists in the continuous improvement and development of culinary standards and professionalism in Australia.
Each year, Anchor™ Food Professionals provide the opportunity for 32 aspiring, young apprentice chefs to embark on a remarkable culinary experience. In February 2021, finalists will fly to Melbourne for a 4-day food adventure, introducing apprentices to a series of extraordinary dining experiences and trips to some of Australia’s most famous food inspired locations.
Proud to be a Chef is a diverse and fast-paced mentoring programme led by 3 inspirational, Australian mentors. Previous guests and mentors have included Lisa Van Zanten, Adrian Richardson, Shannon Martinez, Christy Tania, Scott Pickett, Charlie Carrington, Frank Camora, Tony Twitchett, Anna Polyviou, Teague Ezard, Josh Pelham, Darren Purchese, Adam D’Sylva and more.
Over 600 apprentice chefs have participated in the Proud to be a Chef program since it's commencement in 1996. At the conclusion of the program each year, the judges and masterchefs select one apprentice to award a culinary scholarship for their demonstrated commitment to their profession and their passion for food. Past recipients include:
Our goal is to Encourage, Reward and Recognise future culinary leaders in foodservice.
Mark is currently an Executive Chef Consultant in Australia, Asia and beyond with key roles as Wagyu Beef ambassador for the Gifu prefecture of Japan, Yuzu ambassador for Kochi Japan, Executive chef for Tune Hotel Group Malaysia and Executive Chef for the Royal Melbourne show 2019. His career highlights to date have been hosting food and culture tours to Japan, India, Vietnam Cambodia and Sri Lanka and working alongside the original Iron Chefs of Japan.
As the Executive Pastry chef at the RACV City Club, Josh continues to promote excellence and maintain Le Petit Gateau as a leader in the Melbourne pastry scene. His commitment to quality and passion for the industry has been the driving force behind Josh’s career as he has worked his way through key roles. After a 3 year stint within the U.K working as Head Pastry Chef at Juilien Plumart, Grangers & Co. and Montcalm Hotel, Josh returned to Melbourne in 2014 and resumed his position at the RACV city club.
With her inquisitive and creative nature, Jo Barrett has become one of the most exciting and original thinking chefs in Australia. A pastry specialist, her signature potato-based dessert made a huge impact during her appearance on Masterchef Australia in 2018. Jo was named 2016's "Hot Talent" by Australia’s Time Out magazine and will head to Milan to compete for Australia in the 2019 International Federation of Pastry, Chocolate and Gelato competition. Leading the kitchen at Oakridge Restaurant in Victoria's Yarra Valley, Jo's strong ethical compass and passion for sustainability are underpinned by a zero-waste ethos, the use of hyper-local produce and a respect for native Australian ingredients including their cultural relevance.
32 finalists from across Australia will participate in an all expenses paid, 4 day culinary journey in February 2021.
Apprentice chefs that are passionate about food, are committed to the foodservice industry and love to learn and try new experiences should enter the program.
To complete your application, you’ll need create an original recipe and tell us why you are passionate about food and cookery, where you would like your apprenticeship to take you and what you are hoping to get out of the mentoring program.
Applications open 1st September – 14th November.
Being selected as one of 32 finalists is an exceptional prize, and one standout apprentice is crowned the winner of the Proud to be a Chef event, winning an International Culinary Scholarship tailored to their individual aspirations as a professional chef.
Two additional winners will also be announced for their outstanding achievements.
Hear what some of our past finalists have to say about the Proud to be a Chef program