Paul Dokmanovic, sous-chef at The Banff Centre, out-cooked the competition this month to win the 2008 Canadian Copper Skillet Competition. Hosted by the International Association of Conference Centres, the Iron Chef-style competition involves a last-minute “reveal” of mystery ingredients that competing chefs have to whip into an entrée. Each chef was given 15 minutes to review the ingredients and come up with a menu, then 30 minutes to cook. Dokmanovic won with a dish of rosemary lamb chops with chicken and king oyster mushroom-stuffed basil tortellini and a salad of baby spinach, teardrop tomato, potato, and yellow peppers.
Dokmanovic, along with a group of accomplished chefs from IACC member properties across Canada, was evaluated by a panel of judges on details including originality, technique, presentation, and flavour. As the Canadian winner, he’ll travel to Utah in March for the International Copper Skillet Competition, where he’ll meet the top chefs of countries including Denmark, Sweden, Australia, Great Britain, and the U.S.
The culinary talent behind The Banff Centre’s recently opened Three Ravens Restaurant & Wine Bar (the Centre’s first venture into à la carte dining), Dokmanovic apprenticed at the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology in Calgary, and the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel. He was involved in the opening of the Five Diamond Award-winning Banffshire Club at the Banff Springs, and came to The Banff Centre from the Chateau Lake Louise. For Three Ravens, Dokmanovic was responsible for implementing new kitchen operations, and designing menus for the multi-million dollar new dining facilities.