The year 2013 starts off with a bang, as some of the top chefs from around the world compete for the culinary equivalent of the Olympic gold medal at the Bocuse d'Or cooking competition in Lyon, held every two years. Here's a roundup of some of the top food and culinary events happening around the world in 2013, so far.
Billed as one of the biggest gastronomy, restaurant and food trade shows in the world, the biennial event Sirha is the springboard for new innovative products and ground zero for culinary trends. This year more than 2,200 exhibitors will be in attendance. It’s also the umbrella show that hosts other major culinary competitions like the Bocuse d’Or and the World Pastry Cup. The 2011 edition attracted nearly 163,000 visitors, 17,900 of whom were international.
Organisers have changed things up significantly for the 14th edition of the prestigious culinary competition known as the Olympics of the food world. Unlike previous years where chefs were able to pre-plan their entire menu, the competition will be more spontaneous and challenge the competitors' improvisational creativity. They will also be asked to introduce elements of their culinary heritage and traditions in order to break with excessively Westernised cooking. This year, 24 countries will compete from around the world.
Gourmand World Cookbook Fair
This year one of the most prestigious international cookbook fairs for trade professionals moves from the edges of the city to the Carrousel du Louvre. As the most international cookbook fair of its kind, this year cookery books from 171 countries will be competing to take home bragging rights and an award. New at the 2013 edition is the World Festival of Wine and Food Television, which will draw TV food producers, broadcasters and food TV celebrities to the show.
Asia’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards
The inaugural edition of the Asian version of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants from Restaurant magazine takes place in Singapore and will attempt to identify the best eateries across the continent. Given the growing influence the World’s 50 Best Restaurant awards has exerted over its short 10-year existence, it’s expected the food world will look at the results with great interest.
James Beard Foundation Awards
May 3, May 6
Known as the Oscars of the US food world, chef winners of the James Beard awards often go on to enjoy fully booked dining rooms and food journalists often enjoy steady work. The 2012 award for Outstanding Chef went to Eleven Madison Park’s Daniel Humm in New York, and Outstanding Restaurant to Boulevard in San Francisco. Media awards are announced May 3, while chef and restaurant awards announced May 6.
This year, the largest annual food and beverage show in Asia will be held in conjunction with Wine World Shanghai which will replace the wine hall at SIAL China. This year’s guest country of honor is Turkey. More than 2,000 exhibitors and 45,000 visitors are expected to attend this year.
After being hosted in Hong Kong last year, the largest and most important wine trade show of the year, Vinexpo returns to Bordeaux in 2013, where it expects more than 48,000 visitors and 2,400 wine makers from around the world. Vinexpo alternates locations between Hong Kong and France.
The ambassador of New Nordic cuisine himself chef René Redzepi hosts his third annual MAD food symposium in Copenhagen, which in editions past has succeeded in gathering the culinary glitterati to the Danish capital for a cerebral, intellectual foodie retreat. The theme for 2013: 'Guts,' curated by Momofuku chef David Chang.
Hong Kong International Wine and Spirits Fair
Organised by the Hong Kong Trade and Development Council, the wine fair is billed as the largest of its kind in Asia, particularly given that this year Vinexpo returns to France. As Hong Kong is considered the entry point into Chinese and Asian markets, this fair is strategically and geographically significant for wine makers interested in cementing their position in Asia. Last year, 950 exhibitors from 36 countries took part, including representatives from Azerbaijan, Denmark and Russia, all first-time participants. Italy and France featured the largest pavilions.