TWO Shoalhaven products are featuring in MasterChef The Professionals.
Twenty-three-year-old Nathan Brindle and 27-year-old Sarah Knights are mixing it with some of the best professional chefs in the country, under the guidance of acclaimed chef Marco Pierre White.
Having had some of the world's most successful chefs in his kitchens – including Gordon Ramsay and Australia's Shannon Bennett and Curtis Stone – White is challenging, inspiring and mentoring the 18 professionals.
By his side is MasterChef Australia’s perennial favourite, food critic Matt Preston.
Originally from Orient Point, Mr Brindle, a former St John’s High School student, is head chef at Blancmange in Petersham.
He began his apprenticeship at 15 when he left Nowra for Sydney restaurant Lucio’s, later running catering company River Deli before working at Sepia for 18 months.
Selection for the show involved a host of interviews, as well as shooting footage of the eligible candidates cooking as well as segments talking to camera.
“My name was put forward by the head chef at Lucio’s. I was a bit apprehensive at first and was surprised by how many processes we had to go through to actually get onto the show,” Mr Brindle said.
“It was nerve-racking.
“It has been a great experience but really gruelling at the same time.”
He said it was a great experience working with Marco Pierre White and getting to know his fellow contestants from around the country.
“We would cook three challenges in three days and then the fourth day would be used for filming interviews on each challenge and that may last up to an hour for each challenge,” he said.
“Filming the challenges was quite physical with intense pressure.”
Presenting a finished meal to the judges was also nerve-racking.