clip_image002Over 300 aspiring Filipino chefs are set to join one great challenge by Ajinomoto Philippines Corporation as they launched a culinary competition dubbed as 3rd Umami Culinary Challenge (3rd UCC): The Battle for Umami Bowl.

More schools are competing this year and the humble event will be held on January 20, 2012 at SMX Convention Center. The much-awaited culinary competition is the first of its kind, interschool, multi-category that focuses on umami, the 5th Basic Taste.

The 3rd UCC will feature participants from 29 Universities and colleges that offered HRM and Nutrition courses and from five (5) prestigious culinary schools.

The 2012 challenge is considered to be bigger with new and exciting culinary and non-culinary categories.

Among those who going to be judges are Sandy Daza (Inquirer columnist and TV show host), Chef Babes Austria (Executive Chef of Taal Vista Hotel and former Executive Chef of Malacañang Palace),Chef James Antolin (Vice President of Pastry Alliance of the Philippines), Chef Day Salonga and Chef Mon Acosta (Chef Consultants for opening new restaurants), Nina Daza-Puyat (Editor in Chief, Appetite Magazine), Chef Seiji Kamura (Executive Chef and owner of Mogu Japanese Restaurant), Vicky Alejandrino, (Head of Quality Assurance and Commissary for the Pancake House Group), Chef Colin McKay (Executive Chef and owner of Sala Restaurant Group) and Tetta Arroyo (Travel and Food Writer).

The Ajinomoto 3rd Umami Culinary Challenge is a collaboration of organizations which strongly support the development of the Philippine culinary scene, among them are Glutamate Association of the Philippines (GAP), Elba, Whirlpool/Fujidenzo, Masflex, PR Gaz, Meat and Livestock Australia, and Anvil Publishing and media partners GMA 7, Appetite Magazine, Philippine Daily Inquirer, Inquirer Libre and PR Moms Network.

For the benefit of those who are eager to expand their horizons, seminars will be held on new trends and techniques that can complement one’s cooking abilities. To further improve technique, there are online colleges that offer classes in the culinary arts.