With renowned chefs in attendance,the three-day International Chef Meet being held on the sidelines of the CII Tourism Festival at the Sector 17 Parade Ground has become a centre of attraction.
On Day 2,the most sought after person in this melting pot of chefs was Chef Gissur Gudmundsson. President of the World Association of Chefs Societies (WACS),Gudmundsson is an icon for many budding chefs,a fact that became obvious as the awe-struck professionals got him to oblige with photographs. We have come a long way with the association and are keen on honing the talent of young chefs the world over, Gudmundsson said on his maiden visit to Chandigarh.
WACS,a global network of chefs associations,was founded in 1928 in Paris. Today,the organisation boasts of 93 official chefs associations as members that represent over 10 million chefs worldwide. Gudmundsson,leading WACS since 2008,hails from a small fishing village in Iceland. Icelandic cuisine is primarily lamb and seafood-based with little spice,mostly salt and pepper. My speciality is seafood, remarked the chef who has also held other leadership positions in culinary associations across the world.
It,therefore,is no surprise that he spends 250 days in a year living in hotels across the world. The main aim of WACS is to bring the worlds chefs on a single platform. Despite the diversity of the world,food is a uniting factor, said Gudmundsson,who believes the most important ingredient in any meal is to remain true to ones roots.
There are many global food trends that emerge with time and the most important these days is to make the best use of local ingredients. Also,healthy cooking is something chefs today are advocating, said the chef,who advises young chefs to update their skills and be aware of global trends but make the most of local produce.
As the global authority on food,WACS has the responsibility to act and provide solutions for a sustainable and better future by being responsible in the use of natural resources in the kitchen, said Gudmundsson,who enjoys Indian cuisine provided the spices are not overbearing. There is always red wine that comes to my rescue, he quipped.
Gudmundsson added he was looking forward to the setting up of a World Chef Center on the lines of the World Trade Center in Beijing,China.