Emett, Wallbank complete MasterChef NZ judging panel


MediaWorks is pleased to announce that Michelin star chef Josh Emett and acclaimed restaurateur Mark Wallbank will be joining Al Brown on the judging panel of TV3’s MasterChef New Zealand.

Emett and Wallbank have established themselves both nationally and internationally in the culinary world and are looking forward to testing the limits of the country’s best amateur cooks.

Emett, a judge on previous seasons of MasterChef New Zealand and a celebrity chef on the Australian version of the hit franchise, says: “I am hugely excited to be back in the MasterChef kitchen alongside Al and Mark. I have always enjoyed the process of making the show, and find it a very positive experience – meeting people and eating lots of great food.

“We have a real step up in contestants this year, so I am very intrigued to see how they will develop and progress through the challenges to come.”

Emett has an impressive international resumé, having earned an astounding four Michelin stars while working alongside Gordon Ramsay over an 11-year stretch in London, New York, Los Angeles and Melbourne.

Beside him on the judging panel is Metro’s restaurateur of the year Mark Wallbank, who has revolutionised Asian dining in Auckland.

All three of Mark’s restaurants – Woodpecker Hill, The Blue Breeze Inn and MooChowChow – appear on the 2015 Metro Top 50 Restaurant list, and his Chop Chop Noodle House features in the top 10 of Metro’s 100 Best Dinners Under $20.

Wallbank will be a fantastic source of knowledge for the MasterChef New Zealand contestants and says mentoring the contestants is something he knows he will enjoy.

“As a restaurateur, I’m not only creating an environment for my guests to enjoy, I want my staff to enjoy being there too. A happy, stimulated team brings a fantastic feeling of enthusiasm to any restaurant. You can feel it when you dine there,” says Wallbank.

“That’s why I’m so excited about being a part of MasterChef. We’re taking these home cooks who are full of promise, pushing them, and finding out who has what it takes to be incredible.”

Producers have scoured the country to find the best amateur cooks and have found an amazing selection of ordinary people with extraordinary dreams.

Sue Woodfield, Head of Commissioning and External Production at TV3, says: “Having found the best amateur cooks from around New Zealand, the stakes have never been higher for someone to have their life totally transformed.

“It’s now up to our three judges Al, Josh and Mark to help these good cooks become extraordinary cooks and then to decide who will take home the title of MasterChef New Zealand.”

MasterChef New Zealand is produced by Imagination TV for TV3 and sees a number of amateur chefs trying to prepare food that will blow the judges away.

MediaWorks is also pleased to announce broadcast sponsor Chanui, along with My Food Bag, Stevens Homewares, Škoda, Belling, Glad and The Village Press as programme partners.

The Breeze Network will be a key platform to serve up MasterChef New Zealand nationwide with its stations across the county. Listen to The Breeze for exclusive elimination interviews each morning at 7.20am.

MasterChef is currently produced in over 40 countries around the globe, and airs in over 200. For more information on the programme, go to tv3.co.nz/MasterChefNZ.

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About the author

Mark Wasley

I am from Palmerston North and have my own website. I love keeping myself and Throng readers up-to-date with the latest in television news and upcoming programmes. For this reason and the fact I've been a long-time member on Throng, you'll see regular posts from me on the site. I hope you enjoy them!
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