Press Releases

Executive Chef at Blanket Bay wins National Scholarship

Sep 12, 2001

Restaurant Association Education Trust - Scholarship Winners 2004 include Jason Dell who won the Continuing Education Grant

The 1996 New Zealand Chef of the Year, Jason Dell will use the scholarship to learn the many complexities of food and wine matching by attending courses at the prestigious Culinary Institute of America, thanks to his generous continuing education grant of the Restaurant Association's Education Trust. This grant has also been co-sponsored by American Express.

Chef Dell said that although he had extensive experience of both wine and food in New Zealand, the art of successfully matching the two components together at the dining table was a specific science. The wine and food pairing course on offer at the Culinary Institute of America covers essential elements which specifically relate to the pairing of food with wine.

“Having spent a successful five years working in the wine Mecca of New Zealand, Marlborough, I had the opportunity and pleasure to create and conduct a series of winemakers dinners,” said Chef Dell. “While many of these occasions were a glorious success, I also discovered my shortcoming of having a lesser-experienced and educated palate for grape varieties. The art of wine and food pairing is one topic of significant interest which has eluded me for some time now.”

With the knowledge acquired from the CIA, chef Dell hopes to promote New Zealand's fabulous food and wine matching to the world - launching his career from the exclusive Blanket Bay resort which attracts a well-heeled international clientele.

“One of my goals for the future is to serve as an ambassador for New Zealand food & wine on the global stage.” chef Dell concluded.