Uwe Micheel took home the coveted Chef of the Year award at last night’s Hotelier Awards, winning the prize he narrowly missed out on at last year’s event.
The director of kitchens at Radisson Blu Hotel Dubai Deira Creek, whose remit involves overseeing the operation of the hotel’s F&B outlets, beat off competition from Intercontinental Dubai Festival City’s Olivier Biles and Hilton Dubai Creek’s Matthew Pickop, who were both recognized as Highly Commended nominees.
Micheel proclaimed the awards a qualified success. "I'm extremely happy to have beaten competition, the standard was very high — it means a lot," said the German chef and recipient of the Chef of the Year award.
The Radisson Blu chef, who missed out on last year’s title added he was pleased to have been recognized for his hard work by the award’s judges. Micheel is a pivotal figure within Dubai’s F&B scene, combining his role at the Radisson Blu hotel with the added responsibility of being president of the Emirates Culinary Guild.
The chefs were joined by the rest of the F&B world, which was out in force at the ceremony, including representatives from the bar and front-of-house F&B sectors.
Other winners from the evening included Bernard Ombee from The Address Downtown Burj Dubai. who picked up the Stewarding Person of the Year accolade.
The judges praised Ombee’s impeccable organization, highlighting his movement through the ranks at the property.
Ombee beat off competition from Rajendra Joshi and Mohammed Siddeeque, who both picked up the category’s Highly Commended titles.
The Sommelier of the Year winner, Reflets par Pierre Gagnaire at Intercontinental Dubai Festival City’s Julien Coron said he was pleased his industry was getting the recognition it deserved.
"I didn't expect to win. It's good for my restaurant and says a lot about the food and wine we serve. I exchange knowledge with customers and it's all about pushing the good wines that nobody knows about," he said.
The category’s Highly Commended nominees were The Palace – The Old Town’s Nicolas Vallet and last year’s winner Nicholas Murcott of Raffles Dubai
In the Outlet Manager of the Year category, Felix Hartmann from the Burj al Arab’s SkyView bar and BiCE Restaurant at Qasr Al Sharq Waldorf=Astoria Collection Jeddah’s Chadi Nahra were awarded the Highly Commended accreditation, while Anuj Sharma from Asado at The Palace – The Old Town took home the main award.
F&B Manager of the Year went to Crown Plaza Dubai’s Alfred Abi Moussa, who the judges noted had continued to manage an impressive 15 successful outlets, despite growing competition in the area around the hotel.
The category’s Highly Commended nominees were Emily Shaw from Desert Palm Dubai and Eric Francis Lobo from Al Diar Dana Hotel.