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World Championship of Chinese Cuisine 2024

Did you know that there is a World Championship of Chinese Cuisine and that it is in its 9th year?

This was news to me so I wanted to check this out for myself. This year’s competition is held at the PNE forum. The entire concrete space has been cleared out to outfit multiple cooking stations, white cloth banquet tables, a stage with podium for presentations, and folding tables for local vendors to offer relevant food stuffs and items for sale or advertisement. The only thing that remained was the barnyard scent, although with all the fragrant flavours being cumulated in woks, this would quickly change.

I didn’t know what to expect when I walked in, so was surprised and delighted to discover the above mentioned vendors. Not only was this a great way to spend the time in between competition heats, but this was also a great way to discover new products.

This included wine from Phantom Creek, packaged coffees, Asian skin care, canned abalone, toys and collectables, and even industrial cooking equipment.

There was also small bites for purchase, which I gathered meant guests would not be able to try anything the chefs and their teams would be preparing. Considering that this was a whole day affair, snacks were a welcomed sight. In this regard there were some spicy hot pot skewers for purchase by the stick and dim sum from local Peaceful Restaurant.

Walking in, there wasn’t much of a welcome or any explanation as to what would be going on. And anything that was said on stage was in Chinese, with no English translation. Then everything to follow a loud whistle blast was strictly in Mandarin. Thankfully my years of Mandarin school helped me to make out that they were about to start.

As for the competition itself, I knew enough to follow the photographers as I caught the teams coming in and being introduced, then taking their respective spaces.

I ended up finding a spot along the rails, hoping that visuals would speak louder than worlds and being able to take it in and take photos was enough. Afterall the chefs barely spoke, this wasn’t Iron Chef with commentary, and each four man team was focus on the taste at hand. Divided into stations within their station, where they either prepped their seafood, chopped their vegetables, blended their sauces and marinades, or fried their toppings. I wish I knew how much time they have been given to execute.

From where I was standing I was able to take in three distinct teams, but it was hard to read their badges, and I was unable to recognize their company logos. I was also unable to get the shots I wanted with the zoom of my cellphone, and event photographers and videographers often blocked the spectator view.

However, I did notice that every kitchen unit had a collection of Lee Kum Kee sauces to reach for, as the exclusive condiment sponsor of the 9th World Championship of Chinese Cuisine (WCCC). “As the world’s most recognized name in Asian sauces and condiments, Lee Kum Kee is committed to a mission of promoting Chinese culinary worldwide. Lee Kum Kee will showcase an array of its high-quality sauce products, inspiring participating chefs to create unique and delicious dishes.” (As taken from the press release)

This cooking competition is a three day event running from May 21st to the 23rd. It is organized by the World Federation of Chinese Catering Industry, in partnership with the Canada Catering Association.

This is the first time it has been hosted in Vancouver (which is probably why we have never heard of it before today). There are over 70 teams from different countries and regions here to demonstrate their skill, as they compete for the Lee Kum Kee World Championship of Chinese Cuisine Grand Gold Award.

The WCCC first started in Shanghai, China, in 1992, and has since been hailed the “Olympics of Chinese cuisine”. This completion in Canada has built upon the success of previous events in Rotterdam, Singapore, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Kuala Lumpur and Tokyo.

For those not competing, show runners hope the event “will foster a meaningful cultural exchange among contestants and spectators alike.”

Ticket holders are invited to drop by the Lee Kum Kee booth to browse their range of sauces and products, where each visitor can grab a goodie bag with selected Lee Kum Kee sauces and recipes, “allowing them to bring home the rich flavours of Asia”. This is so long as you following them on one of their social media channels, and take a photo in-front of their neon panda and sauce bottle sign.

I did and got two packages of a tomato soup base for it. This they are ironically advertising as a pasta sauce with the instructions and photo on the packaging showing a pot of tomato sauce covered rigatoni.

2 thoughts on “World Championship of Chinese Cuisine 2024”

  1. It is a spectacular showcase of culinary talent and creativity. Thanks for sharing this exciting event. We’re looking forward to seeing the innovative dishes and techniques presented by top chefs from around the world!

  2. The World Championship of Chinese Cuisine in its 9th year is a cultural feast, showcasing culinary talent from around the world. Held in Vancouver for the first time, the event offers a sensory journey with cooking competitions, diverse vendors, and Lee Kum Kee sauces enhancing flavors. Beyond competition, it fosters cultural exchange, inviting attendees to savor the rich tapestry of Chinese cuisine and take home the essence of Asia through Lee Kum Kee’s offerings.

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