Yannick LaSalle of Restaurant Les Fougères honoured by Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson and others for winning the 2019 Canadian Culinary Championships. - Facebook

Canadian Culinary Championships leaves Kelowna, moves to Ottawa for 2020

Located in Kelowna for the last nine years, the competition will be held in Ottawa

After nine years in Kelowna, the high-profile Canadian Culinary Championships will be moving to Ottawa for 2020.

However, Kelowna has been awarded a regional leg of Canada’s Great Kitchen Party, one of 12 Canadian cities to stage the culinary competition.

READ MORE: Canadian Culinary Championships donates to Rutland Middle School

The event will be held on Friday, Nov. 15, at the Delta Hotels by Marriott Grand Okanagan Resort. Six local chefs from Kelowna and the Okanagan Valley region will go head-to-head in an event that will see the chefs create a signature dish paired with a Canadian wine, beer, cider or spirit, according to a Canada’s Great Kitchen Party news release.

The winning chef will go on to compete at the Canadian Culinary Championships, which will be held in Ottawa on Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, the release said.

READ MORE: This year’s field of chefs at the Canadian Culinary Championships will include three returnees

Co-founder Karen Blair, of Canada’s Great Kitchen Party, said the new location will be more central for chefs on the East Coast.

She said the original plan was to have the championships in Kelowna for three years but ended up staying for nine. With the rebrand of the Gold Medal Plates to Canada’s Great Kitchen Party, there was an opportunity to look at a more central location, she said.

“Also it was time to just freshen it up. We moved Victoria events to Vancouver,” she said. “The local people will be able to cheer on a local chef.”

If there’s strong support for the Kelowna event, and it’s successful then it will continue, she said.

The Canadian Culinary Championships will be held for the next three years in Ottawa.

“We are thrilled with this announcement,” said former chair Judy Burns, of the Canadian Culinary Championships. “Kelowna has been proud to stage the Canadian Culinary Championships in our city for the last nine years. Our community created an incredible event which was supported by so many – from the students at the Okanagan College to our B.C. wineries to our artisanal distillers, local breweries and so many who contributed to our silent and live auction.

“We were proud to host the competing chefs, judges and guests from across Canada. Now it’s our turn. This next evolution of the project now gives our local chefs, wineries, breweries and spirit providers the opportunity to compete on the national stage, which is all very exciting!”

READ MORE: Canadian Culinary Championships afford local talent big opportunities in Kelowna

READ MORE: B.C. chef wins first event of Canadian Culinary Championships


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