King Pie of New Zealand! Bakels NZ Supreme Pie Award winner announced
It’s official – Patrick Lam, of Patrick’s Pies in Tauranga, has been crowned the Bakels NZ Supreme Pie Award winner for a record-breaking seventh year in a row!
Patrick has always dreamed of telling his grandchildren that he was the Pie King of New Zealand, and his dream has come to reality as he took to the stage to accept the Gold Supreme award again at SkyCity in Auckland on Tuesday 30th July.
Patrick is now New Zealand’s most awarded baker, clinching the title by just one point with his stunning mince and cheese pie.
The Awards were announced at a star-studded themed gala event set in the jungle as the Search for the Lost City of Pies explored the far reaches of New Zealand to find victorious pies befitting a gold, silver or bronze award in the 11 finalist categories.
On July 25, the judges, including celebrity chef judge Gareth Stewart, began the task at dawn of finding a winner from 5326 pies entered by 553 bakers. It took nearly nine hours.
While there have been four previous Mince & Cheese Supreme winners (2001, 2002, 2005 and 2013) since the competition began in 1996, entry numbers in this category have steadily grown as New Zealanders declared it their favourite pie.
To win with a Mince & Cheese pie is phenomenal. Not only do you have to get passed the ‘big boys’, the Commercial Wholesale bakers who can only enter a mince and cheese pie in that category and who comfortably bake tens of thousands of them each week, but you have to get past nine other categories, many with more opportunity to ‘stand out from the crowd’ such as Gourmet Meat.
It’s a daunting task, but Patrick Lam of Goldstar Patrick’s Pies in Bethlehem and Tauriko in Tauranga, and Rotorua faced the conquest and became the victor.
Bakels NZ managing director Brent Kersel says: “The Supreme pie was absolute perfection. The pastry was golden, with perfect lamination, flaky, and a delight to bite into. The filling though surprised us. It was like the cheese had been swirled through the mince and the way it blended in your mouth as a result was exceptional, delicious.
“Mince and cheese is my favourite pie, and I’d go so far as to say Patrick’s was the best I’ve ever tasted.”
“Year upon year it gets harder to win this competition because the standard of the entries just keeps getting better.
“We saw some very creative pies come through the Café Boutique category including The Flintstone with beef brisket and bone protruding the top pastry.
“A standout for me was the slow-cooked pork belly pie which was cooked in apple cider and pear cider. It looked pretty impressive.
“So it’s interesting that out of all the categories the Mince & Cheese should take Supreme but then it proves that if you get the formula right, the eye-catching golden pastry and the beautifully cooked, well-seasoned filling, then, yes, Mince & Cheese can out-shine the others. It takes a Pie King to show us that and we congratulate Patrick on his success.”
Alongside the Supreme trophy, Patrick also takes home two golds and two bronze awards and $9,500 in prize money. For this charming, humble Pie King though, the reward comes in bringing satisfaction to his customers and recognising the efforts of his bakery team to make that happen.