Adelaide Chef Wins World Prize For Work With Indigenous Australians


We’re a little bit late to the party, but we wanted to offer a huge congratulations to Adelaide chef, Jock Zonfrillo, who was named the winner of the Basque Culinary World Prize in July this year.

The prize celebrates a chef of any nationality who demonstrates how gastronomy can have a positive impact in fields such as culinary innovation, health, nutrition, education, the environment, the food industry, social or economic development. Zonfrillo is known for his mouth-watering restaurant in Adelaide, Orana (which opened back in 2013), and we are sure that the Orana team are super stoked and proud to have such a talented chef headlining their venue.

Orana, which means ‘welcome’ in some Aboriginal languages, has been built on the 16 years of research and exploration of Australian land, produce, people and history. Zonfrillo celebrates all elements of Australia – from ancient to modern, but it was his specific work with Indigenous people that caught the eye of the BCC.

Every year the judges, featuring some of the world’s most influential chefs, academics and experts, chooses the candidate who best embodies the mission of this unique global award, granted and promoted by Basque Culinary Center (BCC) and Basque Government through the framework of the Euskadi-Basque Country Strategy. The judges were impressed with the work of Orana and the Orana Foundation who have been hard at work on a socially significant gastronomic project.

The Orana Foundation recognises the unique relationship that Indigenous people have with the land and their rich heritage of traditional food culture. Zonfrillo has dedicated a huge amount of his career to working side by side with Indigenous Australians in a bid to craft a new and unique cuisine. Working alongside The University of Adelaide researchers, The Orana Foundation promotes Australia’s first people and their knowledge of the land, whilst building up an online database detailing native foods. Through this collaboration, Zonfrillo has utilised native ingredients whilst protecting and showcasing Indigenous culinary traditions. He’s traveled to multiple Indigenous communities to learn from the traditional land owners how to implement their cooking techniques and use native ingredients in the best way possible.

Zonfrillo has been award 100,000 EURO, which equates to approximately $158,000 AUS. The prize is to be devoted to the ongoing project run by the Orana Foundation which continues to support the production and marketing of Indigenous ingredients.

Congratulations again to Jock and the team at Orana. Keep up the good work!


About Author

I'm a third year university student, studying History and Cultural Studies, & English and Creative Writing. I have a strong love for travel and photography. If I'm not working or at uni, you can find me at one of the many boutique bars or specialty coffee cafes in Adelaide.

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