Chef School grad named Asia’s best female chef for 2021 

Chef DeAille Tam

DeAille Tam, a graduate of George Brown College’s Chef School, has been named Asia’s Best Female Chef, 2021

Tam’s “creative flair, progressive approach and deep understanding of China’s culinary traditions” earned her the incredible honour. She’s the co-founder and executive chef of Obscura restaurant in Shanghai.  

"This award marks a major milestone in my career. I am humbled that many industry leaders who I admire have followed my evolution in this industry,” Tam said in a statement. “I hope to be able to inspire others to pursue their passion." 

Not only is she the continent’s top female chef, in 2018 she became the first female chef in Mainland China to earn a Michelin star—an accomplishment she achieved as the executive chef of Bo Shanghai at Five on the Bund

After completing her Chef School training in the Culinary Skills (2010), Culinary Management (2011), Culinary Arts — Italian postgraduate (2012) programs, Tam returned to her native Hong Kong in 2014 to work at Bo Innovation and then Bo Shanghai. Before opening Obscura, Tam and her husband, who’s also her fellow co-founder and a fellow George Brown grad, spent a year travelling across China to research the cuisine of different regions. Their travels inspired the menu at Obscura.  

‘I never had any doubt that she was going to become great’ 

Chef Dario Tomaselli taught Tam in the Culinary Management and Culinary Arts — Italian programs and said he recognized right away that she had “raw talent.” 

“She was so intense and passionate about food and she wanted to be the best,” Tomaselli said of Tam’s time at George Brown. “Her determination was contagious.” 

“I never had any doubt that she was going to become great,” Tomaselli added. 

Tam’s honour will be celebrated during an online ceremony for Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2021 on Thursday, March 25. You can get the latest on Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants Facebook page and on the 50 Best Restaurants YouTube channel. The George Brown community will be watching!