London-based internationally recognised chef Peter Gordon, a veteran in New Zealand’s hospitality industry who has founded restaurants here and overseas, took out the main Supreme Award at a black tie awards ceremony for his outstanding and ongoing philanthropic efforts – including through the creation of annual culinary events held in New Zealand and Britain, in which proceeds are donated to various charities.
Gordon has raised more than $16 million in support of Leukemia research in less than 20 years, much of this was raised through hosted dining events including ‘Who’s Cooking Dinner’.
Gordon, who is the head chef of Sky City restaurants The Sugar Club and Bellota and The Providores and Tapa Room in London, said it was “incredible” to receive the accolade.
“When they first contacted me and said ‘We’d like you to accept this award’ I kind of thought they had got the wrong email to be honest because I’ve seen what other previous winners have done to get that,” Gordon told the Herald.
“Kea Awards are something I’ve followed for years and I think they are amazing so to be in and amongst it and to get the Supreme Award is really incredible.”
Gordon has supported and made significant contributions to charities the Raukatauri Music Therapy Centre, the Restoration of Appearance and Function Trust (RAFT), Leukaemia & Blood Cancer New Zealand and the New Zealand LAM Charitable Trust and Leuka.
He is the author of eight cookbooks and in 2009 was awarded an ONZM for his services to the food industry. Last year he designed and prepared a gala dinner for 900 people to celebrate former US president Barak Obama’s inaugural visit in Auckland.
Kea Global chief executive Craig Donaldson said Gordon “embodied what it meant to be a world class New Zealander”. “Not only is he an incredibly talented chef, but his ongoing commitment to his philanthropic endeavours shows an immense generosity of spirit,” Donaldson said.
“Peter has pushed the boundaries of cuisine, creating spectacular dishes that showcase our country’s finest produce and New Zealand’s diverse culinary landscape.”