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David Bakker

David was born and raised in Glencoe, Ontario. His first inspirations were to go into the field of business and engineering, but between first and second year at The University of Ottawa, David discovered his passion for food, focusing on changing his career objectives to Culinary Arts.

In 2000, David attained fundamental skills and knowledge of classic French cuisine and pastry at the Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Arts Academy. In 2001, he enrolled at George Brown and fast tracked through the Culinary Management Program graduating with honors. Working at several small bistros in Ottawa, David dedicated himself to mentoring under Executive Chef and then Captain of Culinary Team Canada, Shawn Whalen at the Toronto Marriott Bloor Yorkville Hotel.

In 2003, David entered the Toronto Escoffier Society Apprentice Cook-Off and won the Gold Medal and the title of Top Apprentice in Toronto. This qualified David to compete in the Provincial Competition. At the Provincial Competition, David won the Gold Medal and the Top Overall Apprentice in Ontario, which qualified him to move on and compete against each Provincial Gold Medalist from Canada.

In Moncton New Brunswick, David competed in the National Cook-Off and once again won the Gold Medal and was crowned 2003 National Junior Culinary Champion. Under the tutelage of competition expert Chef Shawn Whalen, David also won Grand Gold, and Best Apprentice of the Show at the 2003 Escoffier Society Culinary Arts Salon.

In 2003, David accompanied Culinary Team Canada to Chicago as a support member where they won four Silver medals. In 2004, David entered the Escoffier Culinary Salon once again, this time as a professional and won the Grand Gold Medal and was crowned Best Overall Professional of the Show. Please see the list below for a complete listing of David's culinary achievements:

Culinary Achievements:

1. Award: Now Magazine “Nine of Dine”
Event: One of the nine top up and coming chefs in the city of Toronto 2008

2. Award: Gold Medal
Event: Culinary team Ontario World Culinary Olympics 2008 Erfurt, Germany

3. Award: gold medal – hot kitchen, gold medal – cold kitchen
Event: culinary team Canada, Expogast 2006, Luxembourg

4. Award: Gold metal (Best In Category, Best Display of Seafood, Best Professional of The Show)
Event: Toronto Escoffier Salon Culinaire, 2005

5. Award: Gold Medal (2 nd overall in World)
Event: “Culinary Team Ontario,” World Culinary Olympics 2004 – Erfurt, Germany

6. Award: Gold Medal (Best in Category)
Event: Toronto Escoffier Salon Culinaire, 2004

7. Award: Grand Gold Medal (Best Display of Poultry, Best Apprentice of Show)
Event: Toronto Escoffier Salon Culinaire 

8. Award: Now Magazine “Nine of Dine” award
Event: One of the nine top up and coming chefs in the City of Toronto (2008)