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The Weekend Neos Kosmos : 12 September 2015
NEWS 2 THE WEEKEND NEOS KOSMOS | SATURDAY 12 SEPTEMBER 2015 DIGITAL.NEOSKOSMOS.COM Legendary chef Kyritsis honoured Janni Kyritsis’ outstanding contribution to the food industry marked at SMH awards MICHAEL SWEET Thirteen years after hanging up his chef's hat, Sydney's Janni Kyritsis has been given a Vittoria Coffee Legend award for his "outstanding long-term contribution" to the food and hospitality industry. The prize, part of The Sydney Morning Herald's Good Food Guide 2016 awards, was announced on Monday. Hugely admired in the industry, Janni has mentored many apprentice chefs over the decades. Born in Kavala, Janni arrived in Australia in 1970 at the age of 24. After first working in a Melbourne food factory he met his life partner David Bradshaw, who encouraged him to train as an electrician and to pursue his insatiable appetite for cooking. Learning English through poring over cookbooks, Jan- ni was taken under the wing of Stephanie Alexander, who saw something special in the young Greek electrician. Alexander gave him a job in the kitchen of her Fitzroy restaurant Stephanie's, where he became second chef. Five years later he moved to Gay Bilson's legendary Berowra Waters Inn on the Hawkesbury River, before travelling on with her to the Sydney Opera House's acclaimed Bennelong restaurant. In 1997 he opened MG Garage in Surry Hills. Named best new restaurant by The Sydney Morning Herald, it won three coveted 'chefs hats' in its first year. Hugely admired in the industry, Janni has mentored many apprentice chefs over the decades. In 2012 he was struck with personal tragedy when David, his partner of four decades, died after a long illness. Janni had been his carer in the last difficult years, juggling guest appearances and charity work to nurse his ailing partner. Speaking to Neos Kosmos this week Janni said that his latest accolade had come out of the blue. Janni Kyritsis at his Surry Hills MG Garage restaurant in 1997. PHOTO: GEORGE FETTING/SMH GOOD LIVING. "I get invited to these kind of awards as an old statesman of the industry, but I didn't think anyone would be giving me an award after all this time," said the 69-year-old. Three years after David's death, he continues his charity work and cooks only for occasional dinner parties with close friends. "I go out a lot. I go on holidays. I try to keep my lonely days at home to the minimum," says Janni. "David and I used to go to Greece every few years on our way to Paris, which was our second home." Next year he will return to Kavala for his 70th birthday. "Greeks don't celebrate birth- Janni at the SMH Good Food Guide 2016 awards being congratulated by Terry Durack (R), The Sydney Morning Herald’s senior restaurant critic, and the guide’s editor Myffy Rigby (L). days much, but for me it'll be a bit spiritual, going back to where I was born." Janni migrated to Australia after his national service as a sailor, a decision he says was made after a Greek emigration official suggested he migrate to South Africa "where he could be a boss, rather than a labourer". The idea of apartheid appalled the young Janni and his mind was made up. "I wanted to see the world. For a Greek boy, Australia was a place that sounded exotic. I didn't think I'd stay for long, but of course after a year I met David, and the rest is history." Tsiolkas up for top literature prize Calling Greek teachers ANASTASIA TSIRTSAKIS Finalists for the Melbourne Prize for Literature 2015 and Awards were announced this week and include author Christos Tsiolkas. The award is made to a Victorian author whose body of published work has made an outstanding contribution to Australian literature and to cultural and intellectual life. Considered one of Australia's most prestigious arts prizes, with a $60,000 reward, Melbourne Prize Trust executive director Simon Warrender said the five authors shortlisted were chosen from a strong field of entrants across all genres and career stages. "The finalists in this year's Melbourne Prize for Literature 2015 and Awards are a testament to Victoria's literary capacity, creativity and our reputation as a vibrant literary centre," said Mr Warrender. Also shortlisted are Steven Carroll, Brenda Niall, Chris Christos Tsiolkas has been shortlisted for this year’s Melbourne Prize for Literature. Wallace-Crabbe and Alexis Wright. The Melbourne Prize for Literature is complemented with three other awards: a $20,000 Writers Prize is being offered to an author of an essay with Vic- toria or Australia as part of its subject matter, and the Best Writing Award 2015 will be given for a published work of outstanding clarity, originality and creativity. A Civic Choice Award, with PHOTO: AAP/TRACEY NEARMY. the winner receiving $6,000, is also up for grabs and will be decided by an open online vote at www.melbourneprize. org Winners will be announced on Wednesday 11 November. The Aristotle University of Thessaloniki is inviting teachers of Modern Greek to take part in a two-week intensive Greek language and culture seminar. The program is aimed at im- proving, refreshing and upgrading teachers’ language skills, while inspiring greater interest in Greek culture. It will follow a similar format to the former ELTF program, with teachers attending lectures on Greek language teaching methodology, with program activities designed to complement the language lessons. Vicky Marinelis, a former participant of the program, said the experience "will equip teachers of Greek with new skills, latest resources and networks, which will ultimately benefit their teaching and their students". As a result of the economic crisis in Greece, only full-fee positions are available, cost- ing $5,000 per person. The fee covers all costs of the two-week program in Thessaloniki, including airfares, accommodation and most meals, along with excursions to Meteora, Metsovo, Vergina, Edessa and museums. The program commences on 20 September until 4 October, 2015. For more information, contact Vicky on 0419 126 160 or email marinelis.vicky.v@ edumail.vic.gov.au The Aristotle University of Thessaloniki’s School of Languages.
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