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Cooking up a sumptuous feast

Members of the food, hotel and hospitality industries are giving their full support to the 28th edition of Chefs on Parade (COP), the country’s foremost culinary festival and competition, which will be held from February 28 to March 3 at the SMX Convention Center.

Chefs on Parade 2013 is a four-day extravaganza of culinary competitions, trade exhibits, cooking demonstrations, celebrity chef appearances, food tastings and other gastronomic delights.

Conceived by the Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines (HRAP) in 1974, the COP has evolved from a simple food display to a much-awaited national event.

COP 2013 is set to be the grandest yet in its history. Celebrity master chefs have confirmed their attendance and there will be more attractions packed into the four-day extravaganza.

Supporters from the corporate world, private institutions and media recognize the importance of COP’s objectives to develop the skills and artistry of amateur and professional chefs to world-class levels, showcase the excellent culinary landscape of the Philippines and the rest of Asia, and demonstrate the importance of the hotel and restaurant industry in uplifting local tourism.

COP 2013 Chairman Philippe Bartholomi underscores that the presence of foreign guest chefs and participants at COP is beneficial to the local industry and chefs. He explains, “If the opponents are of international standards, they will definitely push the Filipino chefs to come up with better dishes, better food.”

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Among the foreign master chefs who will conduct demos and judge at the competitions is Singapore-based Belgian chef Emmanuel Stroobant, host of the Asian Food Channel’s successful show Chef in Black and the currently airing 36 Ways to Live.

Two chefs from the renowned Alain Ducasse international restaurants – Jerome Lacressioniere and Marc Chalopin – will be flying in from Paris to Manila just for COP 2013.

COP 2013 has gotten the nod of a generous number of supporters. The influential list includes sponsors De La Salle - College of Saint Benilde, Meat & Livestock Australia, Nestlé Professional, Del Monte, Oleo-Fats, the Department of Tourism (DOT) and Kitchen Aid; and partners Trade Net Events and Management International, Allied Metals, Enderun Colleges, the Asian Food Channel, GMA News TV, Total Gaz, Imacron, The Puratos Group, Resorts World Manila, Allegro Beverage, Liquid and Liquid Creations, Plan Z, Manila Bulletin, the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Hospitality News Magazine, Olive Magazine, and Flavors Magazines.

More  sponsors and partners will be coming in as the event draws nearer.

COP sponsor Meat & Livestock Australia (MLA) is “beefing” up COP 2013 by holding the first-ever Iron Butcher competition.

Bartholomi explains, “COP and MLA are holding this contest because the butchering skills in our country need to be perfected.” The challenge will have participants cutting up a carcass according to standard and special cuts. 

There will be a total of 30 mixology and culinary competitions on both professional and student categories. Four of which are new to COP: breakfast-making, ice-carving, flair-tending and “dream team.”

Aside from being a culinary celebration, Chefs on Parade 2013 is also a charitable endeavor. Proceeds of the event will go to the Tuloy sa Don Bosco Foundation, a center for excellence that prepares street children for reintegration into mainstream society.

Tuloy sa Don Bosco will also be fielding a team of students of its culinary program in some of the COP competitions.

For more information about Chefs on Parade 2013, contact the Hotel and Restaurant Association of the Philippines secretariat at 816-2421, fax 816-2419, e-mail secretariat@hrap.org.ph or hrap@pldtsl.net, or check out www.hrap.org.ph/cop, www.chefsonparade.org, and www.facebook.com/chefsonparade.

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