MADRID – The World’s 50 Best Restaurants and Spain’s BBVA financial corporation have launched a scholarship scheme that aims to provide opportunities for an aspiring chef to gain experience in some of the world’s most outstanding restaurants, the United Kingdom-based business media organization said in a statement Thursday.
The award, known as the 50 Best BBVA Scholarship, seeks to nurture the talent and potential of one aspiring chef through a stage, or internship, in world-famous kitchens.
“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for aspiring chefs,” the organization said. “We look forward to receiving your entries!”
The first scholarship will take place between June and Sept. 2018, with the recipient spending six weeks at Andoni Luis Aduriz’s world-renowned restaurant Mugaritz in San Sebastian, Spain, currently ranked ninth in The World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2017 listing.
A further six weeks stage will follow in the kitchens of the 2016 World’s Best Female Chef Dominique Crenn at Atelier Crenn in San Francisco, California.
“Nowadays, people can go to excellent culinary schools, but they’re really expensive,” said chef Aduriz.
“What happens when, like in my case, your parents can’t afford to pay for your education?” Aduriz asked.
“Sometimes you need for those doors to be opened in other ways,” he added.
According to the statement, applications are open to chefs with less than three years’ experience in a professional kitchen and ambitious culinary students over the age of 18 from anywhere in the world.
Submission must be presented at the 50 Best BBVA Scholarship application website before Feb 5.
“I always hope that those that work with me learn a lot and take away something positive,” Chef Crenn said. “I want to inspire them, but I am also very much inspired by them,” she said, adding it was “very humbling” to take someone “under your wing and mentor them.”
She said it was her hope that a six-week experience in her kitchens would help the stagiaire in a “journey through life.”
The 50 Best BBVA Scholarship winner will be selected through a three-stage judging process led by 50 Best and BBVA representatives, together with chefs Aduriz and Crenn, and announced in April.
The award ceremony will take place in June in Bilbao, north Spain.
The World’s 50 Best Restaurants has, through the “Restaurant Magazine” published since 2002 an annual list of the world’s finest restaurants offering unique culinary experiences, and establishing itself as a barometer of global gastronomic trends.
BBVA, its co-sponsor, is a global financial group providing financial services in over 30 countries to 72 million customers.
Chef Aduriz said initiatives like the 50 Best BBVA Scholarship are important, “because they help democratize the idea that we need to support talent regardless of the resources they have access to.”