By Judie Steeves
A young Kelowna chef has been appointed as one of two young chef ambassadors by the World Association of Chefs Societies.
Jon Garratt has served as junior president of the Okanagan Chefs Association for the past two years and play a pivotal rose in the association receiving an award last year for having the largest number of new junior chefs in the country.
His peers nominated him for Junior Chef of the Year in 2010.
He has just completed the culinary arts program at Okanagan College, and his instructor, chef Geoffrey Couper, noted he really buckles down and gets the job done.
“Jon’s strength is his vision. Although he has youth on his side, he sees the big picture; the community and health aspects of food as well,” he commented.
He’s good at networking and he’s been instrumental in encouraging young chefs, he added.
This appointment will provide a great opportunity for him to broaden his horizons, he said. “The broader you see, the better for a young chef. It makes for a more well-rounded person and a better chef,” he commented.
Garratt says he is looking forward to the opportunities this will give him. It will involve him working with English-speaking countries to mentor young chefs and act as a conduit between they and WACS associated members and educational bodies.
It will also give him a chance to be in Lyon, France for the prestigious Bocuse d-Or chef competition later this year, where he will man a trade show booth to promote young chefs.
As a young chef, he believes in using the best local and the freshest ingredients possible, allowing individual flavours to speak out in his dishes.
“Flavour is key in what we do as chefs,” he says. “Waiting another day for the fruit to ripen is well worth the wait,” he believes.
WACS represents more than 10 million chefs in more than 93 countries, yet Garratt says only eight of them have young chef programs.
The other young chef ambassador chosen this year is Jasper Jek of Singapore.