After a six month search to find Australia’s biggest foodie, Luke Mangan, one of Australia’s most accomplished restaurateurs, has officially announced Sofia Levin as his new CEO (Culinary Experience Officer). The talented home cook, foodie writer and tastemaker from Collingwood, Victoria will now travel the world on a money can’t buy round of travel and tasting experiences, creating content for Luke Mangan’s extensive portfolio of partnerships and restaurants.
Sofia was selected from some of Australia’s best and brightest foodies across three categories: Drinks Connoisseur, Talented Home Cook & Artisan Supplier. This included the likes of world class bartender Luke Ashton, My Kitchen Rules winner Sammy Jakubiak, pastry chef Christopher Thé of Blackstar Pastry and James Madden of Flinders Island Meat.
As the joint winner of the Talented Home Cook category, conducted in conjunction with P&O Cruises, Sofia’s winning dish of beetroot cured Kingfish with citrus and fennel salad, avruga roe and horseradish cream, will be on the menu in Luke’s Salt Grill onboard P&O’s five ships between October 14 and October 30.
In celebration of Luke becoming the first restaurateur in the world to serve dishes across land, air, rail and sea, the trip will include a four night P&O cruise to Hamilton Island on board Pacific Aria, joining Luke’s new restaurant on its inaugural journey on the Eastern & Oriental Express luxury train between Singapore and Bangkok, enjoying a taste of Virgin Australia’s Business Class, plus dining at Luke’s restaurants throughout Asia and Australia.
Luke commented “The prospect of selecting Australia’s best foodie was an exciting challenge and one we enjoyed immensely. We were consistently stunned by the level of talent in our own backyard and welcome Sofia into our family with open arms. We’re looking forward to what we can achieve with Sofia, working through my network of restaurants and brand partnerships to push the definition of what it means to create and celebrate food in all its forms.”
Speaking of her win, Sofia said: “There’s nothing I love more than food and travel, ideally simultaneously. For a panel of industry professionals to give me this opportunity has been the icing on the cake of what’s already been an incredible experience. This is an opportunity to not only learn and open doors, but to take others along for the ride via my new role as Luke Mangan’s CEO.”
Sandra Tiltman Photos: John Pond