Singapore, 25 April 2021 – After months of intense competition and a night of culinary prowess, Derek Cheong was crowned winner of the second season of MasterChef Singapore at the grand finale earlier this evening! In a fiery and neck-to-neck match against his fellow finalist Leon Lim, Derek impressed the judges with his intricate and refreshing food creations to bring home the MasterChef Singapore trophy.
As the rest of the Top 12 contestants watched with bated breath, both finalists whipped up a three-course menu for MasterChef judges Chefs Audra Morrice, Bjorn Shen and Damian D’Silva. Each finalist was given a score out of 30 by each of the judges for each dish. After the three-round battle, Derek scored a grand total of 78 points out of 90, securing his victory over Leon by merely one point! In their assessment of Derek’s skills, the three judges complimented his detailed approach to each dish, which showcased well-balanced flavours with an added touch of refinement, making his creations worthy to be showcased at any top restaurant.
As the winner, Derek, 24, walked away with a buffet spread of prizes totalling over $100,000 worth of cash and items including:
· $22,000 cash - including $7000 from DBS Bank;
· A book publishing deal with Marshall Cavendish;
· Over $3000 worth of Nespresso machines, capsules and accessories;
· Household and kitchen appliances from Luzerna Chinaware, KitchenAid, Global Knives and Thermomix;
· Internships with MasterChef Singapore judges Chef Bjorn Shen and Chef Damian D’Silva; and
· A Fullerton Hotel staycation and spa package
“This is it - I am Singapore’s next MasterChef!” said the ecstatic winner Derek Cheong. “This is really a dream come true for me. When I was younger, I imagined myself one day to be in the MasterChef kitchen carrying that trophy, with confetti falling around me. I feel like I am one step closer to fulfilling my dream of opening my own restaurant to showcase who am I on a plate.”
Added Derek, “I have grown tremendously as a cook in the MasterChef Kitchen. To be a good chef, it is important to be mentally strong as you must be able to handle pressure and thrive in immense situations. I believe this life-changing experience will allow me to soar to greater heights and guide me in my journey to become a professional chef.”
The second season of MasterChef Singapore promoted “hyperlocalism” featuring Singapore’s unique multicultural cuisine. This season also saw a total of 10 episodes – up from last season’s eight. Apart from celebrating local heritage and cuisine, this season also drew attention to sustainability issues such as reducing food waste and sourcing for local produce to reduce carbon footprint. The casting call attracted applicants in the hundreds, from all walks of life including a singer, athlete, doctor, teacher, florist, scientist, taxi-driver, puppeteer, fitness coach and architect, with the youngest aged 19 and the oldest, a septuagenarian at 79.
Sapna Angural, Head, English Audience, Mediacorp said: “The second season of MasterChef Singapore served up beyond culinary skills. It uncovered passionate chefs and personalities with a common dream - making their mark in the food industry. It also illustrated Singapore’s vibrant culture and heritage and how communities are bonded together by our food and flavours. Congratulations to Derek on being crowned as MasterChef Singapore! You brought your best craft to the table tonight and we are proud of you! To Leon, you were just as impressive tonight! This is only the beginning of your culinary journeys for both of you.”
Mediacorp will continue to support and assist both Derek and Leon in pursuing their passion in cooking, including an opportunity for a commercial representation by The Celebrity Agency.
Added Sapna, “We thank our esteemed judges, all participants, our partners and sponsors, for joining us in bringing MasterChef Singapore to our audiences. Kudos to our production partners Motion Content Group and Beach House Productions for pulling off such an exciting season despite all the challenges of producing the show in strict adherence to safety measures!”
MasterChef was created by Franc Roddam and first launched in 1990 in the UK where it ran for a couple of years on BBC. The show was revived in 2005 where it remains a number one hit for BBC. In 2017, MasterChef was officially crowned the Most Successful Cookery Television Format by Guinness World Records. 2019 was the best year to date with 55 confirmed productions across 35 markets, drawing in audiences in major markets including the UK, US, Brazil, Australia, Italy and Spain. MasterChef format and finished programmes are represented internationally by Banijay Rights, now with over 10,000 episodes produced across 62 markets. Motion Content Group, part of GroupM, a leading media management company, has acquired the rights to produce and broadcast MasterChef Singapore from Banijay Rights.
Fans who wish to relive some of the exciting moments or catch the season again on-demand can do so on meWATCH. The encore telecast of the final episode of MasterChef Singapore is available on Channel 5 on 28 April 2021 at 7:30pm.
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