Led by Per Se Executive Sous Chef Mathew Peters and Commis Harrison Turone, Team USA won gold at the Bocuse d’Or Wednesday, the first time in the event’s 30-year history Americans have come out on top.
In 2015, the team finished second in the competition, held biennially in Lyon, France. With Chef Philip Tessier, the former executive sous chef at The French Laundry, cooking, along with commis Skylar Stover, Team USA was able to make history by placing in the top three. They elevated respect for American cuisine and American chefs along the way as well.
Chef Tessier coached this year’s winning squad. “The crazy part—for someone like me, who had been cooking nearly 20 years—was that you set aside your career for a year and a half to dedicate to this competition. When you do that, you prepare yourself in every way possible. But no matter what you do, half of what happens the day of the competition falls into the hands of a 22-year-old,” Chef Tessier told FSR earlier in the year.
It turns out that young chef was plenty capable. Peters and Turone’s dish was chicken stuffed with mushrooms, foie gras, and crayfish, and a vegan plate of green asparagus with almond custard. Chefs Gavin Kaysen and Thomas Keller were also part of the coaching team.
“The expectation is to drive the competition into a new direction. Many people mimic the winners of past competitions, and those winners have set the bar above and beyond creative,” Chef Peters said earlier in the year when talking about the challenge ahead.
The last gold medalist, Norway, led by Christopher William Davidse, finished second. Iceland, with Chef Christopher William Davidsen, won bronze.