The Ōra King Awards are back for a second season and with diners now getting their say in the voting process, the pressure’s going to be on for professional chefs.

The Ōra King Awards (The Ōra’s) recognise outstanding contributions from chefs working with Ōra King – New Zealand King Salmon’s premium foodservice brand produced exclusively for fine dining restaurants in New Zealand and overseas.

This year there are New Zealand and international citations for both Best Ōra King Ambassador and Best Ōra King Dish.

While the ambassador awards are decided solely by Ōra King’s global team, chefs and members of the public can also contribute nominations for the best dish award by posting an image of the dish on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest using the hashtag #orakingawards.

Anyone who uses the hashtag goes in the draw to win a NZ$200 dining voucher at any restaurant serving Ōra King salmon. The nominations will then be collated with the two winners selected by the Ōra King team.

Last year Matt Lambert from Michelin-starred New York restaurant The Musket Room took out Best Ambassador International while Mark Southon from Auckland’s The Foodstore took out the equivalent Best Ambassador award in New Zealand.

Makoto Tokuyama from Auckland’s Cocoro who took out the award for best NZ Ōra King Dish in 2013 was “very proud” to receive his Ōra.

“I feel very honoured that my dish was chosen. The superb Ōra King salmon gives me great results whichever way I cook it, and this motivates me in my cooking. I will continue to try new ways of using Ōra King to bring out the best in the product.”

The other winner in 2013 was Marco Akuzun from Top Air Restaurant in Stuttgart, Germany for Best International Dish.

NZ King Salmon Foodservice Marketing GM Jemma McCowan says the Ōra King Awards were an outstanding success in their inaugural year.

“After last year’s Awards, we got immediate feedback from professional cooks clamouring to find out how they can get involved. This gives us confidence that we’ll secure a high calibre of entrants for the awards in 2014.

“The Ōra’s are about celebrating the efforts of those who have contributed their expertise, creativity and passion to Ōra King during the past year. For the Best Dish awards, we are looking for that extra special something – whether it be an unusual technique or flavour combination, outstanding presentation, or a real crowd pleaser that has become a stand-out on a restaurant menu,” Ms McCowan says.

“Public involvement in the nominations certainly adds some extra interest and helps consumers share information on where the best dishes can be tasted.”

Nominations close on 30 September and the Ōra King Awards are presented at an industry event in late October. Terms and conditions can be viewed on the Ōra King website here.

A full list of restaurants serving Ōra King can be found on the Ōra King website from mid-July.


Jane Torrance, Pead PR, P: 09-918 5534, M: 021 393 157, E: