Jinu Abraham, executive chef of Heritage Auckland has been announced the winner of the inaugural New Zealand Vegetarian Dish Challenge 2012.
The challenge event was organised by Vegetables.co.nz. Nationwide, chefs and caterers were invited to submit their favourite recipe featuring fresh New Zealand grown vegetables
Over 200 entries were received and Heritage Auckland’s executive chef Jinu Abraham was judged unanimously the winner for his vegan dish entry of baby vegetables with olive, celeriac, candied walnut and macadamia cheese.
“I am truly honoured to receive this prize. It’s great to be rewarded for what I love to do every day. The vegan menu development at Heritage Auckland has been a journey and this win is a very exciting milestone on the way,” says Abraham.
Heritage Auckland is an innovative conversion from a large Deco era department store into a city hotel. After the store moved out in the 1990s, an ambitious development began, transforming the building into a suite-style hotel whilst honouring many of the building’s original features. This effort was subsequently rewarded with several architectural accolades.
The hotel’s iconic Grand Tearoom offers grand event space for up to 300.
The hotel’s iconic roof top Grand Tearoom was completed in 1932 and still today offers one the most beautiful harbour views of any Auckland venue and is now sought after for conference and gala events for up to 300 people.
A second ballroom, eight conference rooms, café, bar, restaurant, and retail space complete the Heritage Auckland facilities.
The hotel has achieved Enviro Gold endorsement by Qualmark New Zealand, the independent hotel rating authority, for its sustainability. A recent innovation at Heritage Auckland is the introduction of sustainable dining philosophy focussing on plant based menus with delicious fresh local ingredients.
The hotel’s lobby café is unique for international hotels offering exclusively vegan cuisine and the hotel’s signature restaurant Hectors has a significant proportion of the menu dedicated to vegetarian or vegan dining choices.
The winning Vegetarian Challenge dish is available on the Hectors menu. Heritage Auckland also has an extensive range of vegetarian and vegan items on the conference banquet menu and in all caters for up to 16 special dietary requirements for delegates.