Trio bake their way to award
THREE Fernvale bakers have been listed among the best in the country, taking out first place in their categories at the Great Aussie Pastie Competition and the Best Pie in Australia Competition.
The Old Fernvale Bakery head baker Stephan Armstrong and two first year apprentices, Logan Coulter and Jacob Cobbin each received national gold awards in their respective categories for their work at the Old Fernvale Bakehouse.
Logan's basil, pinenuts and sun dried tomato gourmet pastie shot his creation straight to the top, Jacob's chunky beef pie was deemed the best of the many entries and Stephan's venison game pastie won the bakery another row of awards for the trophy case.
"There were around 2000 entries in the entire competition with six senior bakers as judges," he said.
"Jacob's category probably had the most competition because almost every bakery would have entered something in the Chunky Beef Pie category, but both the pastie categories would have between 50 to 100 entries in them.
"I didn't really think we would get any gold awards, because this competition was for the whole of Australia. But it was great to win."
Former Lowood State High School students, Mr Coulter and Mr Cobbin have been apprentice bakers at The Old Fernvale Bakery for less than a year.
Mt Coulter started last November and Mr Cobbin started a mere two months ago.
"I am proud to work here alongside these guys and learn my trade here, where everything is done in the old fashioned way and done properly," Mr Cobbin said.
"It's a real pleasure."
Mr Coulter didn't expect his win, but said he has spent a lot of time working on his culinary creations.
"I like experimenting with different ingredients and being creative," he said.
Mr Armstrong accompanied bakery owner Bill Rose to the awards in Sydney, where he saw the best of the best in the baking world.
"It was great to go down there and see what everyone else was doing, and there is a lot of thing we have never seen before," he said.
"I think one thing to say is that our entries were items that are available everyday from the bakery and I'm not sure that was true of everyone at the competition.
"I am happy we are carrying on the traditions of awards and medals this bakery has and that we are a part of that now."
Mr Armstrong said he and his apprentices will continue to experiment with recipes and maintain the range of goods available at the bakery.
"We have the Outback selection now, which was what the venison pastie I entered was part of," Mr Armstrong said.
"It's great to be encouraged to enter these competitions and to have the support that we have when we do."
Other awards for Great Aussie Pastie and Best Pie in Australia competition will be announced in coming weeks.