With Christian André Pettersen’s bronze from Bocuse d’Or 2019, Norway is now the country with the highest number of medals from the world’s most renowned gastronomic competition – even more than France!
Published: 1 February 2019
A culinary revolution has taken place in Norway during the last few years, led by a wave of innovative Norwegian master chefs like Pettersen. Every other year, 24 of the most promising chefs in the world meet in Lyon in France to participate in the world’s most prestigious culinary competition. Since the competition was first held in 1987, Norway has won five gold, three silver, and now three bronze medals, making us the country with the most Bocuse d’Or awards. There is definitely something cooking in the Nordics now – all three medalists in 2019 came from Scandinavia, making it a go-to region for food lovers.
Many other Norwegian chefs have also obtained a worldwide reputation and, over the last few years, an increasing number of Norwegian restaurants have received stars in the Michelin guide. In 2016, Maaemo became the first restaurant in Norway to get three Michelin stars. The opening of the world’s largest underwater restaurant Under in the spring of 2019 will bring Norway even higher up on the bucket list for serious gourmets.
This year’s Bocuse d’Or is not the only international competition in which Norway has recently performed well. In November, the local cheese Fanaost from Ostegården won the gold medal during the World Cheese Awards in Bergen, and a goat cheese from Telemark came in second. This was the second time a Norwegian cheese won the world’s biggest cheese competition. In 2016, the blue cheese Kraftkar from the tiny producer Tingvollost in Fjord Norway was chosen as the Champion of Champions – simply the best cheese of all time.
Some of the world’s most important food writers are now exploring the fresh Norwegian food scene. “Egalitarian and sincere, Norway’s version of New Nordic cooking is frisky, witty and unpretentious”, according to Alexander Lombrano in New York Times, who even labels it “relatively affordable”. He also has a good point when he states that the growing culinary appeal of the Norwegian food scene “isn’t best defined by Michelin – where the dominant DNA is Gallic gastronomic refinement – but rather a delectable local food culture that’s based on the country’s spectacular seafood and produce, amped up by the brevity of its growing season.”
Bocuse d’Or is a biennial world chef championship that takes place in Lyon, France. Candidates representing 24 countries give their best in hope of winning the greatest contest in modern cuisine.
Since the competition was first held in 1987, Norway has achieved five gold medals, three silver, and now three bronze medals.
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