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International Association of Conference Centres

IACC’s Eighth Annual Copper Skillet Award goes to the UK

One of the highlights of the 30th annual conference of the International Association of Conference Centres was the Eighth Annual Copper Skillet Competition which brought together IACC conference centre chefs from around the world to compete for the coveted Conference Centre Chef of the Year award.  Chef Jamian Lewis of DeVere Venues Devonport House in Greenwich, England, won the award upon the approval of the three prestigious judges.  The award was presented by Peter Stockmann, (President 3P Business Solutions) President of IACC Americas, and Neil Pompan, CMP (Chairman & CEO, Pompan Hospitality Global, Inc.) and President of IACC Global.
The three-day annual conference was hosted by The National Conference Center in Leesburg, VA.  Throughout the competition, conferees dined on a wide variety of international dishes at stations throughout the National Ballroom.  Each station featured a recipe that was provided by one of the competing chefs.

Competing Chefs at the Eighth Copper Skillet Competition:
– Chef Jennifer Barker, Sigtubahojden Hotel & Conference Centre, Sweden
– Chef Klaus Boe Bjerregaard, Comwell Holte, Denmark
– Chef Omar Dahak, Hof van Saksen Resort & Conference Centre, Netherlands
– Chef Murray Hall, BMO Financial Group Insititute for Learning, Canada
– Chef Eresh Tantiriwatta, The Grange at Cleveland Winery, Australia
– Chef Jason Weaver, La Torretta Lake Resort & Spa, United States
– Chef Jamian Lewis, DeVere Venues Devonport House, United Kingdom.

Judges from the Washington, DC area included Michael Birchenall, editor of “Food Service Monthly” magazine, Chef Steve Mannino, chef at Rustico, and Peter Griffiths, MBE, director, Le Salon Culinaire International de Londres. The judges awarded second place to Chef Bjerregaard of Denmark and third place to Chef Hall of Canada.

Chef Lewis’ winning dish featured pan-roasted lamb medallions atop seared sea scallops with crushed new potatoes with Rhubarb moulis and carrot & corriander salad finished with rhubarb and sesame dressing.

Contestants were given a mystery market basket of fresh produce, grains and protein ingredients to use in the preparation. Each chef was given 15 minutes to review the items and plan their dish, and then 30 minutes for the cook-off.

The popular Copper Skillet competition was introduced in 2004 to highlight the artistry and skill of the best chefs from IACC-member conference centres around the world and to honor their contributions to the shared goal of providing an outstanding conference centre experience.