Flynn wins Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat regional award

Jul 25, 2022

TAFE SA student Flynn Hawksworth has won the Nestle Golden Chef

Persistence is paying dividends for Flynn Hawksworth who has won the Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat Award for South Australia on his third attempt.

Flynn, a TAFE SA student and apprentice chef at Adelaide Oval, says he is “over the moon” about the award which has been a goal since he first became aware of the competition three years ago.

“I heard about the Nestle competition through my boss and after my first attempt it became a goal to get the win,” he says.

The annual Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat competition gives young chefs the opportunity to test their skills against their peers and showcase their talents to an industry audience.

Flynn was awarded a silver medal for his two-course menu, comprised of a spiced pork medallion with pork floss, black vinegar eggplant chutney, sauteed snake beans, and charred leek, followed by a dessert of poached pear, semifreddo, caramelised pecans, and dark chocolate oats.

He says the success of his menu came down to planning, providing a balance of flavours and being creative without over complicating the process.

“It needed to be simple but well executed and on the day it all went according to plan,” Flynn says.

“At Adelaide Oval I work with a variety of chefs who come from different cultural backgrounds and they helped me think about ways to be creative with my ingredients while also balancing the tastes. I work with a great team and they were really happy when I won.”

Since joining Adelaide Oval in 2019, he’s worked across the venue’s different kitchens and is presently tasked with preparing meat through a variety of methods including smoking, barbecuing and slow cooking.

Flynn says his parents instilled a love of food and cooking in him from an early age and he enjoyed watching cooking shows on television and helping in the kitchen, even preparing freshly caught fish after a day at the beach.

When he’s not working, he enjoys cooking for family and friends and “making something special”, which inevitably involves great salads and food prepared on a wood-fired barbecue.

“I love food. There are so many ways you can prepare a dish, different ingredients you can try and different cultural influences you can include,” he says.

Flynn will join other Nestle Golden Chef’s Hat regional winners from across Australia and New Zealand at a grand final cook-off in Melbourne in September with the winner taking home $10,000.