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TAFE NSW The Hills student Taylor-Mae Lewis may be a second-year
apprentice chef, but she’s already making her mark in the cooking
industry. In 2018 she placed third in the Nestle Golden Hat
competition and was promoted to Junior Sous Chef while working at Quoi
Dining at the age of 20 years.
Growing up on the Central Coast of NSW, Taylor-Mae has always loved
food, so she embarked on a career as a chef until at the age of 17
years she broke both her feet and was told she would never be able to
finish her training, let alone be able to walk along the beach.
Taylor-Mae has proved the naysayers wrong, she recovered from her
injury and was back in the kitchen six months earlier than expected.
With a desire to pursue her passion for fine dining, she moved to
Sydney and enrolled in the Certificate III in Commercial Cookery at
TAFE NSW The Hills.
Taylor-Mae Lewis said, “I love working with fresh produce, the beauty
of fine dining is that you work with such amazing produce and there is
such precision with what you do.”
Taylor-Mae is now working as a second-year apprentice at The Victor
in Dural and is enjoying working in an open kitchen with a line of
sight to the diners.
“Working in an open kitchen means I can see the dishes go out to
customers, it’s really rewarding seeing customers enjoy the food I
create, I can see their smiles and I get to see them taking photos for
“The best thing about being a chef is creativity with food, and it
sounds crazy but I love the pressure during service.
Taylor-Mae has another year to complete her apprenticeship and in a
few years’ time hopes to open her own fine dining restaurant with her
partner who is also a qualified chef.
According to the 2016 Census, the food service and accommodation
sector accounts for 738,231 positions or 6.9 per cent of Australia’s
total working population.
“If you’re thinking about a career as a chef then you have to believe
in yourself and keep going. You need to have the passion because you
can produce the best when you love what you do.”
“The teachers are TAFE NSW The Hills are amazing. They’re very
supportive and I’m learning a lot of things that I don’t get the
opportunity to do at work like baking.”
To learn more about studying cookery at TAFE NSW visit www.tafensw.edu.au or call 131 601.
Media contact: Teresa Lane, TAFE NSW Media and Communications
Business Partner 9796 5476, mobile 0412 773 887