KITCHEN STORIES by Aissa Arambulo-Dela Cruz
A Culinary Journey Amidst the Pandemic
Long before I finally met him in Plantation Bay Resort & Spa in Marigondon, Mactan Island, his name Gerard Apurado caught my attention. Only 27 years old, Gerard is certainly in a big hurry in his culinary journey and lives up to his name – Apurado! And when I finally caught up with him in the resort a few days before the community quarantine, I was totally impressed by his culinary skills. Quarantined in a paradise of a resort, Chef de Cuisine Gerard is indeed lucky to continuously create and improve his baking talent in the midst of a pandemic.
Chef de Cuisine Gerard Apurado hails from San Carlos City in Negros Occidental, His proximity to Bacolod gave him the opportunity to obtain a Bachelor’s degree in Hospitality Management at La Consolacion Colleges in 2013. He was fortunate to start as Commis 3 or a basic chef who works for the Chef de Partie at the Plantation Bay Resort & Spa in 2014. Always on the lookout to polish his baking skills. He took up pastry training courses in L’Ecole Bocas under the expertise of Executive Chef Jean Louis Leon, one of my admired chefs. Recognizing his potential, GM Efren Belarmino sent him to Bangkok for further education and training in Macaron Pastry Training Center. He has been promoted as Pastry Chef and further trained in Malaysia during the Asia Pastry forum.
For someone so young, he has garnered several culinary awards. As a student, he represented his school in the prestigious National Food Showdown in Makati– Student Category, where he bagged the Bronze Medal for Wedding Cake competition. And to add more laurels to his culinary toque, Chef Gerard brought more honor and prestige to Plantation bay Resort & Spa, this time in a professional category – gold and bronze for Wedding Cake and Creative Cake in the Cebu Goes Culinary Competition.
Cheerful and friendly, it was very easy to see why he works well with his colleagues in the resort. His culinary journey proves that getting there means “experiencing genuine challenges, devoting my energy in honing my strengths, learning from experiences of others but always be different”! Quite an insight for someone in a hurry to get to his destination! Really “Apurado”!