Chef Koit Uustalu from restaurant Nero (Tallink Spa & Conference Hotel) was the second runner-up at the Estonian chef championships, called Chef of the Year 2009. Martin Meikas from Pädaste Manor was declared the winner of the competition and awarded the Chef of the Year title.
To enter the competition, chefs had to submit recipes for an à la carte starter, main course and dessert, in accordance with the conditions of the 2009 competition. At the final competition, participants had to prepare a starter, main course and dessert using the same set of ingredients that was provided in the preliminary round. The chefs had four and a half hours for all the cooking. The entries were judged by an international jury.
The first Estonian chef championships were held in 1995, making this year’s competition already the fifteenth in a row. Organised by the Estonian Chefs Association (ECA) and Profexpo OÜ, Chef of the Year aims to promote Estonian cuisine and restaurant and food culture.
Previous winners of the Chef of the Year title: 1995 Tarmo Kebbinau, 1996 Eveli Limbach, 1997 Anti Lepik, 1998 Priit Toomits, 1999 Edgars Kubetskis, 2000 Hendrik Voolmaa, 2001 Oleg Alasi, 2002 Heidi Pinnak, 2003 Vladislav Djatshuk, 2004 Dmitri Bannikov, 2005 Inga Paenurm, 2006 Christen Agu, 2007 Oleg Sõtsov, 2008 Peeter Pihel.