The World’s 50 Best Restaurants has named the second recipient of its culinary scholarship, launched last year in association with BBVA, which offers an ambitious chef the opportunity to work in three top kitchens.
Andersen Lee, a 20-year-old chef from Montreal, Canada, has been announced as the second ever recipient of the 50 Best BBVA Scholarship, with 24-year-old Jessie Lui winning the first in 2018.
Entries were received from aspiring chefs in 74 countries, with 1,200 applicants between 18 and 50 years of age applying for the single scholarship.
Sponsored by global financial group BBVA, applicants are required to have less than three years’ experience in a professional kitchen and the scholarship is awarded following a three-stage judging process led by 50 Best and BBVA representatives, including written submissions, supporting testimonies, self-produced videos and live interviews.
The five-month programme will give Lee the opportunity to spend six weeks working at Odette in Singapore, which was recently named The Best Restaurant in Asia in the 2019 edition of the Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants awards, followed by six weeks at Core by Clare Smyth in London, and finishing with six weeks at Quintonil in Mexico City.
Raised in Montreal, Canada, with Taiwanese and Hong Kongese heritage, the young chef has two and a half years’ professional cooking experience in his home city, most recently at French-Canadian restaurant Bouillon Bilk. The scholarship will see Lee work outside of Canada for the first time.
Group editor of The World’s 50 Best Restaurants, William Drew, said: “We were blown away by the strength of all of the entries, which is an indication of the incredible talent, passion and drive of so many aspiring chefs across the the world. Andersen’s philosophy on food, his fresh thinking and his deep desire to learn stood out. We are very much looking forward to seeing where the future takes him.”
Before embarking on the programme, Lee will be presented with the scholarship at The World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards ceremony sponsored by S. Pellegrino and Acqua Panna which will be taking place in Singapore on the 25 June.
Lee said: ”To have won the 50 Best BBVA Scholarship 2019 has truly left me at a loss for words. Being a chef is not just about the food, it’s about the respect of the environment, discovering yourself and working with ambitious people. I’m so excited for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.”