The name of Eckart Witzigmann is a quality parameter outside the culinary world, also: for example, the International Eckart Witzigmann Award. The ‘ECKART‘ has been awarded since 2004. The award, wich is presented by the Witzigmann Academy, honors outstanding individuals in the field of ‘Excellent CulinaryArt, Innovation’, ‘Creative Responsibility’ and ‘Culture of Living. For the first time, 2017, the ECKART was endowed with € 50,000 of prize money, to reflect the prestige and importance of the award among top international culinary prizes. The coveted prize has previously been awarded to HRH Prince Charles of Wales, Günther Grass, Tommy Ungerer, Ferran Adrià, Alain Ducasse, Joël Robuchon, Marc Haeberlin, and Dieter Kosslick, among others.
Personalities have been honoured with the ECKART who have performed a great service for cooking and dining culture in a particular way.
Cooking at the highest level represents the pinnacle of the art of cookery. It is not only about enjoyment but also about issues that increasingly engage all of us: quality, sustainable management and a regional point of reference.
Chefs have a high level of responsibility. For this reason, all those who were honoured bear an important message: joy in the culinary arts is a crucial basis for the enjoyment of life. For all of us it is a heartfelt desire that children and young people learn this art of living from their parents and experience how important good and healthy nutrition is.
The gala dinner honouring the award winners will be prepared with primarily regional products. Great wines from the best wineries will be served with them.
Eating and its rituals are an essential component of the culture we live every day. Cooking has been designed from time immemorial. It is always about the creative interplay between tradition and vision. As chefs, we need to keep posing ourselves this challenge in both a creative and a quality-conscious way. Our professional responsibility requires that we set standards. How believable and convincing we can be in doing so depends not least on the image of our profession in the public eye. And there’s still quite a lot to do here. What our industry has been lacking so far was an independent, as it were academic distinction committed solely to quality.
Awarding the ECKART in Munich is a good choice. I found the idea to give it my name a special honour and a challenge at the same time. That’s because the prize – with its strict quality orientation – does offer the opportunity to help establish respect for the standards that we try to fulfill at our stoves in a way that is effective as good publicity – not just for the benefit of individual guests, but for dining culture