Chef Florent Cheveau Wins USA National Selection To Compete In 2018 International Finals
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LAS VEGAS (Dec. 4, 2017) – MGM Grand Executive Pastry Chef Florent Cheveau will represent the United States in the 2018 Cacao Barry® World Chocolate Masters Competition in Paris, France. Cheveau earned the title of National Chocolate Master at the USA National Selection qualifying rounds and will compete as a global finalist in the prestigious international chocolate competition next year.
World Chocolate Masters is sponsored by Cacao Barry, the leading brand of high-quality French chocolate and cocoa products, and attracts top chocolate industry attendees and professionals from around the world.
Cheveau competed in the national qualifying selection, April 28-29 in Chicago. The intense showdown challenged chefs from across the country to complete three pastry assignments, showcasing their creativity, determination, speed and skill.
“Years of on-the-job training and the opportunity to represent the United States at the World competition drove me on the path to triumph at the USA National Selection,” said Cheveau. “Competing among incredible talent in Chicago was an honor, and the experience is my inspiration as I prepare intensively for Paris.”
At the 2018 finals in Paris, Cheveau will face-off against more than 20 national finalists from around the world. Only one will be named World Chocolate Master. If Cheveau is victorious, it will be the first time the United States has taken the title.
MGM Grand Vice President of Food and Beverage Jason Shkorupa, said, “Chef Cheveau’s dedication to creating imaginative, high-quality pastry items has impressed guests at MGM Grand since he joined our team in 2015. From the desserts served in our food and beverage outlets to the intricate showpieces presented at large-scale events, his talent shines through every item he touches. We are proud that the world will get to witness his skill first-hand and wish him the best on his journey to the international finals.”
The United States qualifier, which took place at The Chicago Chocolate Academy, challenged contestants to tell a cohesive story in both flavor and aesthetics by creating a chocolate showpiece, fresh pastry and to-go snack item based around the theme “Futropolis” – visualizing the future through chocolate. Submissions were evaluated based on taste, texture and creativity.
Cheveau’s winning showpiece was an artistic representation of how construction and industrialization can encroach on natural environments. The vibrant sculpture depicted robotic bright blue hummingbirds drawing nectar from man-made red flowers growing along steel wires. His fresh pastry was a chocolate tart with candied peanuts, orange compote and Grand Marnier Chantilly mascarpone served inside a tube. For the snack-to-go item, Cheveau designed an innovative to-go container complete with a magnetic can to house his praline, lemon, hazelnut and chocolate traveling cake.
Cheveau trained for the qualifier for five months, working eight hours a day in the pastry kitchen after his shift at MGM Grand. As executive pastry chef, he oversees preparation, creation, execution and presentation of all pastry operations for the 5,044-room property. Balancing his daytime duties with planning for the prestigious contest was a labor of love, and he’s ready to do it again on the international level in 2018.
For high-resolution images of MGM Grand Executive Pastry Chef Florent Cheveau, click here.
About MGM Grand
MGM Grand Hotel & Casino is “The Entertainment Authority,” creating the ultimate Las Vegas experience. The hotel features the astonishing KÀ by Cirque du Soleil; world-famous dance crew Jabbawockeez; Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club; master illusionist David Copperfield; a flagship Topgolf location; and world-class entertainment at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. MGM Grand offers signature restaurants by celebrity chefs including Tom Colicchio’s Craftsteak, Michael Mina’s PUB 1842, Masaharu Morimoto’s Morimoto Las Vegas, Emeril Lagasse’s New Orleans Fish House, Wolfgang Puck’s Bar & Grill and Michelin three star and Forbes Five-Star restaurant, Joël Robuchon. The resort recently remodeled all of the rooms and suites in its main tower and launched the industry’s first-ever STAY WELL Collection. MGM Grand is home to many of today’s hottest DJs including Tiësto, Calvin Harris and Steve Aoki who share residencies between Hakkasan Las Vegas Restaurant and Nightclub and WET REPUBLIC, The Strip’s hottest day life destination. The hotel also features a state-of-the-art, non-smoking Five Green Key conference center, the Grand Spa, Cristophe Salon and an inviting six-acre pool complex. Upscale accommodations include SKYLOFTS at MGM Grand, an exclusive boutique luxury hotel within the hotel and The Signature at MGM Grand, a luxury all-suite, non-gaming hotel located adjacent to the main resort. MGM Grand is a wholly owned subsidiary of MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM). For more information and reservations, visit mgmgrand.com, call toll free at (877) 880-0880 or find us on Facebook and Twitter.
About Cacao Barry ® (www.cacaobarry.com):
By constantly inventing and reinventing Pastry and Gastronomy, France gave its name and mark to this art. It is a tradition envied by the whole world. It is all about creativity, innovation, and above all passion. Since its creation in 1842, Cacao Barry® has been entirely committed to this heritage. Today Cacao Barry® provides the most complete palette of products, to all passionate chocolate craftsmen around the world: chocolate and couvertures, pralinés, origins and exclusive plantations, decorations and moulds, inspiring them and opening doors to new creative experiences. Besides, Cacao Barry® offers the widest international community of chocolate professionals, Ambassadors’ Club and Chocolate Academies to support craftsmen and chefs on their quest for perfection. Cacao Barry® is a global Gourmet brand of the Barry Callebaut group, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cacao.
About Barry Callebaut Group (www.barry-callebaut.com):
With annual sales of about CHF 5.9 billion in fiscal year 2013/14, the Zurich-based Barry Callebaut Group is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products – from the origination and processing cocoa beans to producing the finest chocolates, including chocolate fillings, decorations and compounds. The Group runs more than 50 production facilities worldwide and employs a diverse and dedicated global workforce of over 9,300 people. The Barry Callebaut Group serves the entire food industry, from industrial food manufacturers to artisanal and professional users of chocolate, such as chocolatiers, pastry chefs, bakers, hotels, restaurants or caterers. The two global brands catering to the specific needs of these Gourmet customers are Callebaut ® and Cacao Barry ®.
The Barry Callebaut Group is committed to sustainable cocoa production to help ensure future supplies of cocoa and improve farmer livelihoods. It supports the Cocoa Horizons Foundation in its goal to shape a sustainable cocoa and chocolate future.
The World Chocolate Masters is an initiative of Cacao Barry ®, one of the gourmet brands of the Barry Callebaut Group (www.worldchocolatemasters.com)
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