Meet The 2019 Beef + Lamb Ambassador Chefs
Beef + Lamb New Zealand have announced their five Ambassador Chefs for 2019 to act as figureheads to drive innovation and creativity within the foodservice sector. The appointments follow the announcement of the 173 Beef and Lamb Excellence Award holders for 2019, with the ambassadors selected from some of the highest rated restaurants during the assessments.
OUR VERY OWN! Freddie Ponder is originally from the UK but calls himself Kiwi proud. He is a passionate chef, husband, father and surfer and is head chef at Table Restaurant @ Nice Boutique Hotel.
Freddie says he feels extremely lucky and blessed to live in Taranaki and is inspired by the beautiful scenery he is surrounded by, especially the lush green grass growing amazing beef and lamb. He loves to pop in to surrounding farms to source locally grown, fresh ingredients for his dishes in between taking the kids surfing or skateboarding.
With his twin brother Richard as sous chef, the rest of his kitchen and front of house team, Table Restaurant is a great playground to be creative with New Zealand beef and lamb. With such a great team and restaurant owners behind him, Freddie says every day is wonderful.
This is Freddie’s second time as a Beef and Lamb Ambassador Chef and he says it was a wonderful experience to work with Beef and Lamb New Zealand during 2018. To become an Ambassador Chef once again in 2019 – “it’s like wow in chef talk, time to smash it!”
Dish description: Smoked eye fillet with BBQ short rib, beetroot three ways, goats’ cheese & basil jelly.
Dish story: Inspired by his surroundings, Freddie says the idea for this dish came late at night looking at the crazy-red West Coast sunset and smelling the delicious aromas of a late-night BBQ going on down the road. Eye fillet has such a beautiful flavour, and with a quick smoke to finish if off gives the aroma of a backyard BBQ. The short rib’s amazing, juicy texture will be like a beef experience in itself and the colours and flavours of beetroot work perfectly for my crazy, red sunset.