Odd Ivar SOLVOLD
When Odd Ivar Solvold climbed the podium in 1997 to receive the Bocuse de Bronze, it was by no means his first victory in a culinary competition. Since 1988, he had put in a string of award-winning performances; the Silver Medal at the World Young Chef Championships, and the Best Chef of Norway competition, which he has won three times. An active member of the Norwegian culinary team, he is often presented by his peers as the “king of competitions” and enjoys helping others prepare for their own performance, acting as coach to Charles Tjessem, Geir Skeie and Ørjan Johannessen, for example. His mind is wide open to other culinary cultures and he fights to win respect for and improve the quality of products. However, his most satisfying victory was undoubtedly winning the confidence and professional esteem of Edgar Ludl, a kind of godfather to Norwegian chefs who created a renowned gastronomic restaurant at his village on the outskirts of Sandefjord, which draws a constant stream of gourmets from Norway and beyond. After being Ludl’s right-hand man from 1988, Odd Ivar built his own restaurant in 2002 in Art Deco style at the centre of the historic park in Sandefjord. He still finds time to make a few dreams come true, such as writing three works devoted to Babette’s Feast. In November 2006, he produced a culinary book on DVD and, surprise, in 2009 he sold his restaurant... Then opened a new one, the place he had always dreamed of: a brasserie combined with a café-bakery, a wine bar and a culinary studio for cooking classes. The name of this magical place: SMAK, which means Taste in Norwegian, quite simply. His activity doesn’t stop with cooking and he loves to communicate his know-how through books and DVDs (six in total), including an amazing book on the theme of Babette’s Feast, co-written with a pastor.In 2013 however, he has to make a choice since he’s constantly solicited by clients for his skills as a consultant and, most of all, he will be taking the helm and becoming more heavily involved in the Bocuse d’Or structure in Norway.