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Duncan man cooks up silver medals with Team Canada at Culinary Olympics

Édouard Receveaux was one of seven members on Team Canada that finished eighth out of 19 countries

Things are really cooking for Duncan’s Édouard Receveaux.

He won two silver medals with Team Canada at the Culinary Olympics held in Stuttgart, Germany earlier this year.

Receveaux and the other six members of Team Canada finished eighth overall in the world out of 19 competing countries, judged by an international jury of world class chefs, receiving silver medals in both categories of ‘Restaurant of Nations’ and ‘Junior Chef’s table’.

“Being awarded two silver medals feels like a rollercoaster of emotions,” said Receveaux. “All the hard work the team put in comes down to one service and to come away with two medals is something we can be proud about. To represent our country at the highest level is a torch we gladly carry.”

Receveaux, 24, is originally from Nanaimo and the first member of his family to be born in Canada after they immigrated here from France. Receveaux was pursuing a degree in Forestry at UNBC when he realized his calling was in the culinary arts, leading him back to his roots in France where he was accepted to École Ducasse. École Ducasse was voted the best culinary school in the world as of this year.

Leaving the island at 19 he spent three years in Paris where he completed his Bachelor’s in French Pastry which combines both pastry and business courses. Growing up French, Receveaux was exposed to a lot of European food culture, and discovered his love for cooking at an early age.

“Cooking at home was a vital thing my parents held close to their heart and I helped them cook dinner every night for as long as I can remember,” said Receveaux. “I love cooking because it’s extremely human. It brings out emotion in people whether you are making the plate or sitting at the table enjoying it. It’s a culmination of endless hours of work to create a memorable moment in someone’s day. The creative freedom is something that is addicting. Seeing visions come to life and guests genuinely enjoying the creation and the workflow to bring it to life is a form of satisfaction that is not found in many lines of work. This is what keeps me coming back.”

Receveaux, who has been living on the mainland for the past three years and works at Vancouver’s Sheraton Wall Centre, joined Team Canada in April 2023 through the encouragement of the chef at his workplace who also competed and coached.

“After a year of work she gave me a recommendation to the team. I tried out and the rest is history,” said Receveaux. “Representing the country on this team is no easy task. It is a huge commitment from both the coaches and cooks involved. Endless hours balancing your job and Team Canada events to fundraise complimented with many early mornings, late nights and little sleep.”

The team of seven, comprised of cooks and chefs across Canada, competed in Stuttgart the first week of February, and Receveaux returned home on Feb. 20. Receveaux recalls going to Germany as a little kid but says he was too young to remember much. While the competition took up most of his time he didn’t do much exploring but did carve out some time for a bus tour which supplied a good look at the city. While an experience like this is chock-full of great moments, Receveaux says the one that stuck out most for him was at the end of the service — coming down to the last 80 plates then sending out the last one knowing that the team had gave it their all.

“The creative side of making it work with little time and seeing the habits you pick up along the way become automation is an amazing feeling when things click. Having the whole team in that state feels like a well oiled machine running at high RPMs. Time fades away and you become engulfed in what you are doing and that’s what keeps cooks coming back for more. Overall this has been a crazy and transformative experience. A huge endeavor to take on that I am happy I challenged myself to. The amount of exposure and skill you gain over time doing this at a high level is a great professional boost for a young cook.”

About the Author: Chadd Cawson

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