International Travel Fair
International Fair for Regional Tourism
Play with tastes: enjoy tastings of luxurious Brno restaurants, unique drinks and a cooking show
January 11th, 2018
At the travel fairs you will also eat well. That’s because in keeping with tradition, the REGFOODFEST is being held at the same time. This festival of regional specialties and regional foods offers dishes from various Czech and Moravian regions as well as international cuisine. In the middle of the festival pavilion is also a bar where unique drinks with a story will be served. And if you’d like more, there will be tasting menus from ten luxurious Brno restaurants. Aspiring young chefs and confectioners will also be competing during the 24th annual international Gastro Junior Brno 2018 – Bidfood Cup.
While over the Christmas holidays most of us were resting, enjoying home cooking and an endless array of grandma’s cookies, a few dozen young gourmets and their teachers were paradoxically hard at work. Just a few days remained until the final rounds of the prestigious Gastro Junior Brno – Bidfood Cup competition and nerves were high-strung.
Spectators and professionals alike will enjoy the competition that will take place from January 18th – 21st, 2018 in conjunction with the GO and Regiontour fairs, of which Gastro Junior Brno – Bidfood Cup has become an integral component.
“You can’t really relax over Christmas with January just around the corner. All the organizers and competitors are always really nervous,” laughs Eva Bílá from Střední škola Brno, Charbulova. Along with Brno Trade Fairs and the Association of Chefs and Confectioners, this well-known Brno school has been organizing the competition for the entire 24 years of its existence.
“If you enjoy shows like MasterChef, then you’ll certainly like the competition. It’s a stage event where courage, experience and speed make the difference,” notes Bílá. But it’s not just a cooking show. There are also competitions in other areas of study like confectioners and waiters. This year is also interesting because it will be the first time they have added bartender and barista.
The competitors don’t know their task in advance, they are given only basic information. Their specific tasks are not revealed until they are on stage. For example, chefs will be given a “black box” that could contain poultry, fish, game or whatever comes to your mind, but they won’t find out until right before the competition begins.
Competing chefs will have 40 minutes to prepare the ingredients, put together a menu and choose their approach. During this time they will receive assistance from their “sparring partner”, usually one of their instructors. And then they will have 45 minutes to prepare the food, during which time they must work alone. “Of course, we practice what we can. Before the competition students prepare, but you can’t practice everything. To succeed you have to want to show them something, and you have to enjoy it. Nerves play a big role, especially for such young people. I think that for some students, a competition like this is an experience they will never forget,” says Eva Bílá. The Gastro Junior Brno – Bidfood Cup is intended exclusively for cooking school students up to 23 years of age.
They might even be intimidated by the reputations of those assigning and judging the competition tasks. These are highly placed members of individual associations that for many years have been presiding over the most prestigious competitions in their age group – the Association of Chefs and Confectioners of the CR, the Waiters Association of the CR and the Czech Bartender’s Association. This year, for example, culinary skill will be assessed by Marek Svoboda, certified commissioner of WACS, the World Association of Chef’s Societies, and representative of the general sponsor of the event Bidfood. And the bartender category will be judged by Martin Vogeltanz, five-time recipient of the Bartender of the Year. Also assuming patronage for the competition are continental director of WACS for Central Europe and President of AKC ČR Miroslav Kubec and President of the Czech Bartender’s Association Aleš Svojanovský.
The stage event is extremely entertaining for the public, who can watch it on big screens in the arena. This year the competition will be held in pavilion P with an appearance by popular actress and renowned cook Markéta Hrubešová.
During the Go and Regiontour fairs, pavilion F will also feature a bar where top bartenders will prepare special alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. Regional foods will be offered by the RegFoodFest festival. There will also be tasting menus from luxurious Brno restaurants including Koisha, Kohout na Víně, Signature restaurant, Pavillon, Borgo, Palazzo and Konfit. The tastings will take place from Thursday January 18th to Sunday January 21st at specified times. There will only be limited seating available for purchase on site. A week before the fair the Go and Regiontour Facebook pages will announce special contests where you can win a tasting.