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Bulgaria – Officially on the Culinary Map of Europe

Bulgaria was marked as a new culinary destination, now part of the large JRE family


Bulgaria is officially the newest member of the International Association of Young Chefs JRE (Jeune Restaurateurs). During the key event on March 6, held at the premises of one of the association’s partners – the HRC Culinary Academy, the three Bulgarian representatives were welcomed, Vladislav Penov (restaurant Cosmos), Filip Zahariev (Oná Guesthouse), and Veselin Kalev (restaurant aEstivum). Each of them received personally the association’s symbol, presented by JRE President Daniel Lehmann.

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“Today we add Bulgaria to the JRE map – it is a pleasure for us that you will be our first members. We all have a common goal, and today more than ever, we are open to the new. I believe that exceptional opportunities lie ahead, and in the future, we will be able to learn from each other,” shared Daniel Lehmann, president of JRE-Jeunes Restaurateurs and owner of the Moosegg restaurant in Switzerland. In addition to the special insignia for the association, each chef received a membership certificate in the prestigious association, which provides new horizons, experience, and exchange within the guild.

“Our joining is a big step forward, as well as a serious responsibility. Bulgaria has a lot to show in terms of products, recipes, and culinary heritage, and we are sure that thanks to JRE, we will be able to popularize the heritage we possess,” added Vladislav Penov during the press conference. In the context of the culinary theme, the three Bulgarian chefs showed their interpretation of traditional Bulgarian dishes, unfolding familiar flavors in an unusual way.

During the press conference, JRE’s international partner – Mastercard, announced the provision of a scholarship for the Culinary Arts program at the HRC Academy for a talented girl under 20 years old. “Bulgarian flavors are our cultural heritage, and we are proud that from now on, it will be a little easier to preserve and translate them into the modern language of world cuisine – for guests from abroad, but also for ourselves. We congratulate the sector on its constant development and inspiration and hope to include more girls in the profession with our scholarship,” adds Vanya Manova, Manager of Mastercard for Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Albania, and Kosovo.

Mastercard has been an international partner of JRE for over twenty years and expands the partnership on local ground with the new opportunity for young girls from vocational schools in public catering to study for free “Culinary Arts”, a professional two-year program at the prestigious HRC Academy in Sofia.



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