The lowdown on the Emirates Culinary Guild with president Uwe Micheel

The lowdown on the Emirates Culinary Guild with president Uwe Micheel

Uwe Micheel portrait

Uwe Micheel, culinary adviser of Radisson Blu Hotel DDC and president of Emirates Culinary Guild, shares news from the guild, including upcoming projects.

What is the role of the Emirates Culinary Guild?
I have been president of the Emirates Culinary Guild for the the last 22 years. My role is to lead, plan and organize. One of our key tasks is to take care of our partners. It is thanks to the support, passion and financial contributions of our partners that we are able to conduct hands-on training, webinars, virtual competitions and events such as the Culinary Olympics and World Cups.

What’s your latest news?
From May 20 until June 2, 2022, we have a big event in Abu Dhabi. Under the theme “Rise Together,” we are hosting the “The Worldchefs Congress 2022.” We are actually hosting seven events under one roof, so you can imagine how much work is involved. The events include:

  • Worldchefs Congress
  • Global Chef Competition
  • Bill Gallagher Young Chefs Forum
  • Salon Culinaire
  • African Cup
  • Expo Culinaire
  • Education Area

Despite what has happened over the last two years and what is currently happening in Ukraine and Russia, we are still looking forward to great congresses and welcoming chefs from around the world.
We recently concluded a great competition that showcased Canadian ingredients, and we launched a virtual competition with European beans as well as an event with Washington Apples and US Beef.

What have been some of ECG’s recent highlights and what are your upcoming projects?
In the past two years, we organized the Culinary Olympics in Stuttgart, which was an amazing success for our team. We then held the Expo Culinaire and Salon Culinaire in Sharjah, our final international culinary Event before Covid-19 took over.
At the start of 2020, we also achieved a new Guinness World Record for the largest number of pear pies in a line, one of the many records supported and executed by Emirates Culinary Guild. The rest of 2020 was very challenging for the whole world, but we kept going. For instance, YouTube channel had only 143 subscribers, so we decided to organize our first virtual competition, “Everyone can Cook,” in May. We subsequently had many virtual competitions and have seen our YouTube channel grow to 6,680 subscribers.
Furthermore, also ran webinars for our partners to generate additional revenue and keep our young chefs busy.
In April 2021, we hosted the first international competition, our International Salon Culinaire 2021.

How do you foresee the future of the Emirates Culinary Guild?
I do see a bright future for the guild, but it will require a great deal of passion and hard work from the board and members. With support from the chefs, I believe the Emirates Culinary Guild will succeed. We need to adapt to the new normal, whatever that is, and create innovative events to keep up with the new business world. One of our key activities is to promote our profession as a career to the younger generation.

What are the latest culinary trends?
In my opinion, the trend for home delivery and dark kitchens will continue. I also expect the vegan movement to gain traction; it is considered healthy and offers value for money as well. Fine dining will stay, but it will need to be dynamic to maintain its place in the market.

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About author

Rita Ghantous

Rita Ghantous is a hospitality aficionado and a passionate writer with over 9 years’ experience in journalism and 5 years experience in the hospitality sector. Her passion for the performance arts and writing, started early. At 10 years old she was praised for her solo performance of the Beatles song “All My Love” accompanied by a guitarist, and was approached by a French talent scout during her school play. However, her love for writing was stronger. Fresh out of school, she became a freelance journalist for Noun Magazine and was awarded the Silver Award Cup for Outstanding Poetry, by The International Library of Poetry (Washington DC). She studied Business Management and earned a Masters degree from Saint Joseph University (USJ), her thesis was published in the Proche-Orient, Études en Management book. She then pursued a career in the hospitality industry but didn’t give up writing, that is why she launched the Four Points by Sheraton Le Verdun Newsletter. Her love for the industry and journalism led her to Hospitality Services - the organizers of the HORECA trade show in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Jordan, as well as Salon Du Chocolat, Beirut Cooking Festival, Whisky Live and other regional shows. She is currently the Publications Executive of Hospitality News Middle East, Taste & Flavors and Lebanon Traveler. It is with ultimate devotion for her magazines that she demonstrates her hospitality savoir-faire.

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