A Rotorua couple's cookbook is proving to be a cut above the competition.

Gerhard and Henrietta Egger's cookbook, A Cut Above: Cooking with AngusPure, has won the New Zealand section of the Gourmand World Cookbook awards. They will now go on to represent New Zealand, competing for the title of World's Best Meat Cookbook in June.

The Eggers were pleased by the book's reception and proud to represent New Zealand on the international stage.

"[The book] is doing very good, and being a part of the awards is getting us a lot of exposure. Our website has been getting hits from all over the world, from places like South Africa and Iraq," Mr Egger said.


"New Zealand beef and AngusPure are getting some good exposure now, but if we make it into the last five [shortlist] it'll be huge. [The awards] are like the Olympics of the cookbook world, or at least that's the marketing spiel."

A Cut Above is a diverse collection of beef recipes from around the world, interspersed with stories and photography from New Zealand's cuisine and farming culture. The book started when the couple were looking to for a new project.

A lot of the photographs Mr Egger takes professionally end up in photo libraries, and he gets no say in how they're used, so he was looking for something that would give him more control over the final product. Mr Egger had worked as a conference, events and product photographer for AngusPure, so he approached it about doing a cookbook focused on Angus beef.

"It's a very niche book. We like to do New Zealand specific stuff, so unlike more generic books we really needed support to make it viable. And this way we got to eat a lot of very lovely beef," Mr Egger said.

The awards attract entries from all the big publishing houses and celebrity chefs, food stylists and book designers. The Eggers' book is self-published, and they produced it entirely in-house.

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