The winner of Bluewater’s seventh chef competition is proof that success in the superyacht industry can come at any time in life. Tyron Hardie, aged 26, only started working on board superyachts six years ago, aged 20. He started looking for work as a deckhand or engineer, but taught to cook by his mother, ended up getting a job on a 30m motoryacht. Six years later, here we are.

Bluewater’s chef competition was held in Antibes at Secrets de Cuisine and 12 superyacht chefs attended. Somewhat similar to the Master Chef ‘invention test’ (for all those Master Chef fans out there), the contestants were given 30 minutes to use all the contents of a ‘mystery bag’ of ingredients, producing one dish for the semi final, two for the semi final and a three course meal, in 45 minutes, for the final – not to mention a surprise a surprise cake decorating task for the final two. Somewhat amusingly, this year’s winner left his cake utterly untouched with just a few minutes to spare.

“The contestants fought a very close battle this year, and showed a real mix of styles,” recalls John Wyborn, director at Bluewater, who’s particularly pleased that the winner is one who learned as he cooked. “Tyron learned his trade on the job, like quite a few yacht chefs, and was not formally trained as a cook. Yet he produced a consistently high standard of food and drove himself harder and harder as the heats progressed. His final meal as a triumph of instinctive flair for the use of ingredients.”

Winner: Tyron Hardie

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