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Saigon Gourmet Week Launches With All Female Star Cast

Saigon Gourmet Week Launches With All Female Star Cast

Sofitel Saigon Plaza and Disciples of Escoffier Vietnam will present the first all women chef culinary festival in Vietnam as part of the annual Saigon Gourmet Week.

Coinciding with Vietnamese Women’s Day, three Michelin-starred chefs and six celebrity chefs will take over the Sofitel Saigon Plaza culinary department from Oct. 15 to 20.

The event aims to honour women and their talents in the world of gastronomy as well as raising awareness for the career-opportunities available to women in the culinary industry.

A private focus group will also take place for women working in Accor hotels across southern Vietnam, led by Accor’s Chief Talent and Culture Officer for Asia Pacific, Christine Rumble.

Accor recently announced the launch of WILD F&B (Women in Leadership Disrupting Food and Beverage), an initiative which sets out to tackle the imbalance of gender diversity in the food and beverage industry by offering support for female talent such as career guidance and thought leadership forums.

The festival brings together Michelin-starred chefs Julia Komp (Germany), Flora Mikula (France) and María José San Román (Spain).

Also attending will be celebrity chefs Anne-Cecile Degenne from Raffles & Fairmont Makati (France), Beatriz Gonzalez (Mexico – France), Keiko Nagae (Japan – France), Kimsan Sok (Cambodia), Georgiana Viou (France) and Angela Brown who heads the culinary brigade at Raffles Grand Hotel d’ Angkor (United Kingdom – Australia).

The highlight of the culinary festival will be the Cheffes Battle & Gala Dinner held on Saturday Oct. 19 in the Diamond Hall of Sofitel Saigon Plaza.

The chefs will lead teams of local female talents to prepare the main course for 120 guests using ingredients from a secret box, complementing the four other courses crafted by the hotel’s Executive Chef, Stephane Leforestier.

The battle will be judged by Nguyen Phi Van (Chairwoman of Saigon Innovation Hub and Vietnam Angel Network) and Duong Thu Huong (CEO of Forbes Vietnam), among other successful women from various industries in Vietnam.

Meanwhile, the High Tea at Boudoir Lounge is the latest addition to the festival, with a collection of sweet treats prepared by celebrity pastry chef, Keiko Nagae from Japan. The afternoon tea is available from Oct. 16 to 18, with seatings between 3pm to 6pm.

The festival will end on Vietnamese Women’s Day (Oct. 20) with an All Star Cheffes Brunch and Buffet Dinner at Mezz Restaurant, as well as an intimate Dinner at L’Olivier Restaurant in the evening.

“Sofitel Saigon Plaza prides itself in providing a culinary event for the most discerning food connoisseurs in Ho Chi Minh City. The gathering of Michelin-starred and celebrity chefs highlights our commitment as an ambassador of French art-de-vivre to offer the best French cuisine and culture in the heart of the city while honouring women,” says Olivier Revy, General Manager of Sofitel Saigon Plaza.

The fourth Saigon Gourmet Week is co-hosted by Disciples of Escoffier Vietnam, a French association of more than 25,000 chefs from over 26 countries.

The association sets out to develop young Vietnamese talents by teaching culinary skills, and has gathered the local female talents for the Cheffes Battle on Saturday Oct. 19.

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©The Bureau Asia 2021

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