Works at: JW Marriott Hong Kong
Qualifiers: selected to represent China/Hong Kong
Pastry chef Roger Fok started his professional career in 2006 at the Konglong hotel in Hong Kong before taking up the position of Pastry Supervisor at the JW Marriott (also in Hong Kong) where he works under the tutelage of some of the world’s most renowned chefs. Always out to improve his all-round skills and challenge his own limitations, Fok regularly partakes in culinary competitions. As a member of the Hong Kong national team he won first prize at the 2013 Salon Culinaire Mondial in Switzerland. His participation in the 2013 Top Patissiers in Asia, which was held in Japan, earned him third place.
“I love chocolate. My biggest motivation for participating in the World Chocolate Masters is to express my love for chocolate. Representing Hong Kong in this international competition and going to the final are a dream come true”, Fok confided to us.
In the words of Roger Fok:
Where does my passion for chocolate stem from?
In terms of its taste, texture, temperature, art, history and the happiness that it brings to people, chocolate is the most amazing thing in the world. When I made my first chocolate creation at the JW Marriott Hotel Hong Kong in 2010, I instantly fell in love with it. I could not stop researching it, exploring new techniques to create new chocolate desserts and products, and sharing the experience with my friends.
Why do I participate in the World Chocolate Masters?
My relentless passion for chocolate was the biggest drive to join this competition. I want to share my love for it with the entire world. This is the first time that Hong Kong succeeded in entering the world final, an opportunity to present Hong Kong chefs on a world platform. In recent years, Asian teams have achieved good results in a lot of international competitions, demonstrating their outstanding capabilities. I sincerely hope that this will stimulate more chefs to excel in their work and that they’ll get the chance to take part in such a prestigious competition in the future.
How do I prepare for the World Chocolate Masters?
Together with a team of young chefs, we have worked diligently for the last 10 months to prepare for the world final. From brainstorming and creating the first prototype to the final product, numerous modifications and tasting sessions; different industrial players and mentors joined us at different occasions. My entry has grown out into a big industry gathering for which everyone was eager to share and participate. The process has been a wonderful journey, nurturing teamwork and industry partnerships.
How do I plan on convincing the jury members?
For this competition, I think the taste and the theme of my creations are most important. I believe that when the jury members see my work, they will appreciate the passion and the effort we put into the final creations. And to highlight the Asian culture, some Asian ingredients will be used to impress the jury members.
What do I hope to learn from this experience?
To represent China and Hong Kong in this competition, bringing forth the opportunity to create excitement and teamwork for the ‘sweet’ chefs in Hong Kong, that is already a big win for us. We will maximise this exceptional opportunity to learn from the jury and from all the other participating countries on how to better our work, bringing the teachings and experience back to Hong Kong and China to help take our work to the next level. And of course, to build a network with the other participants which will hopefully result in long-term friendships and cross-culture learning!