Thursday, February 22, 2024

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    Dessert Master’s Reynold Poernomo says it’s “hard to get recognition from well-established chefs”

    Reynold Poernomo was named runner-up during the Dessert Masters 2023 grand finale and now he’s revealed that it’s been difficult to gain recognition from “well-established” chefs after competing in three MasterChef franchise competitions.

    Speaking to Mediaweek after his loss to Gareth Whitton during the November 28 finale, Poernomo admitted that while he completely “understood” why those who haven’t competed would feel that way, it has been a labour of love to earn their respect.

    “It is actually quite difficult to get recognition from really well-established chefs,” the 29-year-old said. “But I’ve worked really hard for it. I’ve worked hard to get respect from chefs locally and really amazing chefs internationally, who are some of the world’s best, and to be recognised by them, it really means a lot because this craft is not easy.”

    He further added that another Dessert Masters contestant was concerned that Poernomo — who owns both Koi Dessert Bar and Monkey’s Corner — would be just another “MC alumni who knows nothing”; however, he was able to earn their respect through his knowledge and technical skill.

    Dessert Master’s Reynold Poernomo says it’s “hard to get recognition from well-established chefs”

    Reynold Poernomo, Dessert Masters 2023, Ten

     “I know plenty of MasterChef alumni who haven’t taken the same path I have since it’s not the most fruitful and not the easiest,” he said. “Entertainment media is probably the easiest thing to do, but it’s not the one I like to do. It’s my craft. It’s truly a dedication to the art.”

    Interestingly, when Mediaweek has spoken to the likes of Kirsten Tibballs and Adriano Zumbo, both have found a new respect for the MasterChef contestants, given they had only created Pressure Tests for them in the past.

    “Competition is a different world,” he said.

    What’s next for Reynold Poernomo’s growing empire

    Even though he didn’t win the $100k prize money, Poernomo has grand plans for Koi in particular.

    “We are going to be expanding to Melbourne,” he said. “I was hoping for it to be earlier, but with design changes etcetera, it will be opening in March and then I’ll be looking abroad for overseas opportunities.

    “I just want to give it one last shot in the high-end side of things in Australia before I move on.”

    reynold poernomo dessert masters 2023

    Poernomo, Dessert Masters 2023

    In addition to this, he’s also planning on another secret part to Koi where he can “try out crazy foods” and has some seriously exciting collaborations coming up with brands that he “believes in”.

    “I don’t like to just pick any brands,” he said. “Honestly, if it’s a brand that I even consume myself, like a noodle I like to eat or a burger place…But it has to make sense.

    “Not everything’s all about the money,” he said. “It’s all about the plan.”

    Stream Dessert Masters 2023 on 10Play now.

    The post Dessert Master’s Reynold Poernomo says it’s “hard to get recognition from well-established chefs” appeared first on Mediaweek.

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