Judging Panel

Lauraine Jacobs

Lauraine Jacobs

New Zealand

An internationally respected food and wine writer, Lauraine Jacobs trained at the London Cordon Bleu School. She is a past president of the NZ Guild of Food Writers, food columnist for the NZ Listener magazine, and author/editor of 10 books including “Always Delicious” published in September 2018. Lauraine was the New Zealand editor of “Truth, Love and Clean Cutlery”.

Geoff Scott

Geoff Scott

New Zealand

Acclaimed chef, Geoff Scott was trained in Europe under the famous Roux brothers, Alain Ducasse and Michel Rostang, before returning to New Zealand to take ownership of the highly successful Auckland restaurant, Vinnies. A regular contributor to BITE magazine and well regarded as a consultant, Geoff is an industry lecturer and food competition judge across the country.

Jason Roberts

Jason Roberts

Australia

A native of New Zealand who splits his time between Sydney and New York City, Jason is an internationally known chef and advocate for healthy living. He is Executive Chef at The Bistro at Manly Pavilion and co-founder of artisan wholefoods brand rocket+rabbit. He hosted Channel 9’s Fresh, as well as award-wining food talk show Jason Roberts’ Taste and has authored three cookbooks.

Ian Curley

Ian Curley

Australia

Ian Curley is a British-born and Australian-based chef, Ian is co-owner and chef at French Saloon and Kirk’s Wine Bar and Director of restaurant consultancy group, Exec Chef. Ian hosted his own TV show, Channel 7’s Conviction Kitchen, and has had recurring guest spots on MasterChef Australia, Yes Chef and Postcards. He is a dedicated Ambassador for Loaves and Fishes, a food rescue charity and mentors disadvantaged youth in learning career and essential life skills.

 

Akiko Katayama

Akiko Katayama

North America

Akiko Katayama is a food writer and Forbes.com columnist based in New York City. She is the host and producer of “JAPAN EATS!”, a weekly radio show and podcast on Heritage Radio Network, as well as a board member of Heritage Radio Network and director of the non-profit organization The New York Japanese Culinary Academy. Akiko served as a culinary judge on Food Network’s Iron Chef America multiple times and on Netflix Original The Final Table.

Matthew Peters

Matthew Peters

North America

Chef Matthew Peters grew up in Meadville, Pennsylvania and trained at Le Cordon Bleu in Pittsburgh. His intense focus and attention to detail allowed him to flourish in New York at Per Se and then at The French Laundry, inspiring younger cooks to do the same. He is the first American chef to win the 2017 Bocuse d’Or Gold Medal for the United States. Matthew currently resides in Austin, Texas where he is developing his first restaurant slated to open Winter of 2019.

Judging Criteria

Creativity

  • How innovative is the dish?
  • How effective is the visual presentation of the dish?

Craftsmanship

  • How difficult are the techniques employed?
  • How well executed are the techniques that have been employed?
  • How well does the dish showcase Ōra King?

Competition Challenge

  • How engaging is the chefs interpretation of the theme; Sustain?
  • How effective is this interpretation as a dish?

 

Semi-Finalist Tastings

We want to encourage an interactive dialogue between the chef and the judges – a sharing of ideas and stories. This gives the chef a platform to share their dish inspiration and the opportunity for judges to ask questions.

  • Ideally the judging session will take place outside of service time.
  • There will be one round of tastings. The two judges will visit each of the semi-finalists restaurants together to taste the Best Dish entry. They may be accompanied by an Ōra King representative who will also taste the dish but who will not contribute to the judging process (this will be advised at the time of the booking).
  • The judges or the Ōra King representative will pick up the bill for the Best Dish entries (plus any other food and beverages consumed) at the conclusion of the session. The chef is not expected to carry the cost of preparing their Best Dish entry.
  • The judges will submit their score-cards independently to head office. The top three scored entries will be the finalists – they are invited to New Zealand, the top one scored entry will be the winner– this will be announced in New Zealand.

Japan

For information on the judging process in Japan click here.

 

Judging Dates

The semi-finalist tastings will take place on the following dates.
An Ōra King representative will be in touch to book in the tasting.

 

New Zealand

  • Auckland: August 19
  • Rest of North Island: August 20
  • Nelson, Marlborough: August 26
  • Rest of South Island: August 27
  • Contingency day: September 2

North America

  • East Coast: August 19 – 20
  • West Coast: August 26 – 27
  • Contingency day: September 2

     

    Australia

    • New South Wales: August 19
    • Queensland: August 20
    • Victoria: August 26
    • Western Australia, Tasmania, South Australia: August 27
    • Contingency day: September 2

    Japan

    For information on the judging dates in Japan click here.

    The 2018 Winners