Ryan, David

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                                         DAVID RYAN
                               One of the World’s Best Chefs
                                    by Denise Berthelotte

You never know what's cooking with Mary (Traboulsee) Rogers' son. David Ryan has become one of the world's top chefs by relying on a creative mind and sheer determination. Ryan won a gold medal in the Culinary Olympics held in Berlin last September.

"The flare comes to him naturally," Rogers said.

Ryan was raised in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia but frequently visited his grandmother, Adele Traboulsee, on the Miramichi during the summer. Traboulsee passed away last year.

Straight out of high school, Ryan took a job pumping gas and changing tires at a garage. "He came up to me one day and said, ‘Mom, I can't do this for the rest of my life,’” she said. Ryan went on to tell his mother he was interested in studying small engines. But Rogers had other plans for her son. "As a child he learned how to sew and cook. He had a real flare for art." Rogers persuaded Ryan to study a vocation that would require him to use his imagination.

Eventually, he chose cooking and graduated from a culinary school in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia in 1984. Ryan found himself in demand as soon as he graduated. He was hired immediately by the new Halifax Sheraton Hotel, and before long was transferred out west. He's been working at the Lake Okanagan Resort in British Columbia as executive chef for the past four or five years.

Aside from preparing extravagant dinner plates and mouth watering meals, Ryan also demonstrates a knack for food sculptures using lard and salt.

Ryan is also about to get a taste of what it's like to judge other chefs' edible artwork. He was asked to judge local competitions after winning in the Culinary Olympics.

"I'm just a proud mom," Rogers said while she peered through a photo album filled with some of Ryan's centrepieces and clippings of media write-ups.

                    Ryan puts eight days work into winning seafood platter

Mary Rogers cooked many meals, but it's her son that's getting all the medals. David Ryan is considered to be among the three best chef's in the whole world. He was among 1,200 competitors from 32 countries to compete at the Culinary Olympics last September in Berlin. He was one of only three to win a gold medal.

Ryan was part of Team Canada. His team was composed of six chefs from British Columbia. The Olympics are held every four years to coincide with the Summer Olympics.

Ryan's winning dish was a Pacific seafood platter. He put four days of preparation into the dish before even boarding a plane for Germany. The food was preserved in air sealed bags and secured in styrofoam coolers. He spent another four days perfecting the platter in Berlin.

Marks are awarded for aspects including craftsmanship, nutritional value, balance, taste, flavour and originality. All entries must be edible.

The centrepiece was arranged so the food components, including the salmon, were in their natural state.

Ryan was honoured with 22 provincial and regional medals before qualifying for the Olympics.

                      Spicy school project earns perfect mark

David Ryan wasn't among the best in his class back in high school. But he's definitely, among the best chefs of the world. "I remember his first project. He made 100. It was the first time in the history of the vocational school that a perfect mark was given," said his mother, Mary Rogers. The project required students to gather as many spices as possible and introduce them to the class. Ryan's efforts included placing a sample of each spice in a transparent plastic disc with a paragraph explaining the components and uses of each and the Latin name.

Source: Miramichi Leader – March 18, 1997

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