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Tosca Pizza Challenge At DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru!

luxury haven doubletree hilton executive chef jaffery othman
Oven-baked flat bread, tomato sauce, and cheese with your favourite toppings, and out come your most desired Italian Pizza!

Have you attended any pizza workshops? Well, it was my first and here I was with Executive Chef Jaffery Othman of DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru, Malaysia! With more than 25 years of experience under his belt, Chef Jaffery has lent his skills to some notable names in the international hospitality industry. Be warned - lots of photos in this post!

doubletree hilton tosca pizza challenge media event
The event saw myself, along with Gourmet Living Writers and Tony Johor Kaki from Singapore, working out at the exclusive Pasta and Pizza Workshop at Tosca Trattoria Italiana, joining other Malaysian media chaps. Hubby and I were whisked off in a hotel car to DoubleTree by Hilton JB early that morning. Traffic was smooth, and it took us just about 30 mins to reach the new spanking hotel from the Woodlands Causeway.

doubletree hilton jb kitchen tours
doubletree hilton johor bahru kitchen tour
Media were invited to a kitchen tour at the event, where we got to see the staff in action.

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca kitchen tour
doubletree hilton jb tosca hygiene manager
Led by Nor Sharmilawaty Binti Bakeri, the hotel's Hygiene Manager, issues such as hygiene and quality control play a crucial role at the establishment.

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca pasta demo
doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca pasta machine
Pasta demo by Chef Yuzry with a peek at their pasta-making machine.

doubletree hilton jb tosca squid ink pasta
Handmade pastas at Tosca like this Squid Ink Tagliatelle.

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca pizza demo
Our eye-opening kitchen tour ended with a Pizza Challenge at Tosca. Leading the culinary artists at DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru is Executive Chef Jaffery Othman. The workshop kicked start with the Exec Chef giving us a pizza demo.

doubletree hilton jb tosca italian pizza workshop
doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza making
Have you ever tried making a pizza at home?

doubletree hilton tosca zesti woodfired pizza oven
With an open kitchen concept, the outlet features an antipasto table and Tosca’s Zesti Woodfired Pizza Oven, a unique stainless steel arch commonly seen in MasterChef reality cooking shows.

doubletree hilton tosca zesti woodfired pizza oven
Besides the oven’s exclusive design that matches the contemporary décor of Tosca, its ability to go up to 700°C in 15 minutes makes the oven perfect for gourmet cooking. The first of its kind in Southeast Asia, this feature sets a precedent for other hotel dining establishments in the region.

doubletree hilton jb hygiene quality control
To begin our pizza challenge, participants had to go through a stringent hand-washing routine demonstrated by their Hygiene Manager.

luxury haven reviews doubletree hilton jb tosca hygiene
My hands are germs-free now after all that scrubbing and sanitizing! It certainly reminded me of my Singapore Airlines' training days where we visited the SATS in-flight catering.

doubletree hilton tosca pizza challenge ingredients
Now, I'm all ready for the challenge. Participants were grouped into pairs to compete against one another. Using these ingredients, we were to create our very own pizza!

luxury haven doubletree hilton tosca pizza making workshop
It was my first time making a pizza! Gosh, that heavy-weight rolling pin was making me weary in no time!

luxury haven doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza making
luxury haven doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza challenge
I discovered that it wasn't easy rolling out a round dough no matter how hard I tried. I gave up eventually, and decided to cut my dough into a rectangular shape instead. Who said pizzas have to be round?? Thankfully, I got a really nice partner, who practically went along with my nonsense. Lol!

doubletree hilton jb tosca luxury haven pizza creation
Well, I decided to do a twin pizza! Half with tomato base, topped with cheese, tuna and smoked salmon. The other was a sour cream base, with anchovies, olives and wild rocket. Lena and I collaborated really well. Off to the oven to bake!

luxury haven doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza challenges
doubletree hilton jb tosca luxury haven winning pizza
The final product after presentation! Does it look good to you?

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca pizzas
Here are the rest of the entries! Pretty impressive with all sorts of variations, huh?

doubletree hilton jb tosca judges pizza tasting
Time for the 3 judges to go around sampling our masterpieces. We had to please not just one, but three palates!

doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza tasting judges
Pretty excited when the judges came to my team's pizza. Lol!

doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza judging time
It was time for some decision making based on taste and creativity!

doubletree hilton pizza challenge lena lau go communications
doubletree hilton jb tosca pizza challenge winners
And the winning pizza ............. Pizza No. 4, and that's ours!! What a surprise! Lena's my lucky star!

luxury haven doubletree hilton jb gm simon mcgrath
Handing out the prize was Simon McGrath, General Manager of DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru.

doubletree hilton jb media event winner
Here's my pretty partner - Lena!

doubletree hilton jb tosca hotel stay vouchers
The prize is a 3-nite stay at DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru!! Wow, looks like I'll be back to #doubletreejb! Thank you, guys!

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca media event
doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca media tasting event
doubletree hilton tosca open concept kitchen review
After working hard in the kitchen, it was time for our lunch at Tosca. I love this private dining room where you'll get to watch the kitchen staff in action!

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca homemade bread
Tosca Trattoria Italiana Homemade Bread

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca mushroom soup review
Zuppa di Fungi @ RM25 is a flavoursome wild mushroom soup. The whipped cream skating around the creamy potage makes it a joy to savour. ★★★★★

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca fettuccine alfredo
The Fettuccine Alfredo @ RM25 is the restaurant's homemade pasta with Parmesan cheese. As the cheese melted, it formed a velvety and rich coating on the pasta. Although the pasta is tasty, I would prefer it to be served with some seafood. ★★★★☆

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca cheesy chicken breast
The Petto di Pollo Farcito @ RM42 is not as simple as it looks; its ingredients worked together to build a marvellous sense of harmony.

doubletree hilton jb tosca cheesy chicken breast review
It’s easy to ruin a chicken breast, but the meat turned out moist and tender with its precision timing. Stuffed with spinach and mozzarella cheese, the dish is accented by a rich redolent sauce accompanied by grilled vegetables and baked potato. ★★★★☆

doubletree hilton johor bahru tosca dessert review
The Semifreddo ' Pistachio' @ RM15 is a must-try! The frozen parfait, served with raspberry sauce, is so yummy that I'd snatched my hubby's share as well. Oops! ★★★★★

doubletree hilton tosca pizza challenge chefs hat apron
Reflecting the restaurant's gastronomy values, DoubleTree's kitchen is all about delivering authentic, well-cooked cuisines using the finest quality ingredients.

doubletree hilton johor bahru review
Come, let's check into my hotel room now cause I'm dead tired after the event. Catch my " staycation " review at DoubleTree by Hilton Johor Bahru, An Ideal Getaway, or dining experience at Tosca Trattoria Italiana!


  1. Congrats to you and Lena! Are you sure this was your first time making pizza? ^^

    I like your creativity. Twin pizza. Really amazing and I am sure it tasted great as well.

    Enjoy your stay!!

    1. Rose, thanks for your lovely note! Yap, it was both our first time making pizza. Hahaha! Guess we were plain lucky :D

  2. The food looks great and congratz for winning the contest!

  3. This look deliciou and fun to participate.

    1. Jackie, we had fun making & tasting the pizzas! xoxo

  4. No, I have never tried a pizza at home, in fact I don't really cook. So you are amazing!

  5. Congrats and enjoy you stay soon. Lovely experience and at least you were honest in saying that its not easy to roll out the pizza dough.

    1. Nava, hahaha! I really had a tough time, dear :)

  6. Wow I am REALLY taking in all that delicious food porn - what a wonderful evening you must have had :D
    And congrats on the awesome win!

    Choc Chip Uru

    1. Uru, thanks! It was a fun-filled event with all the good food!

  7. Replies
    1. Amy, certainly some great fun! Looking fwd to more......

  8. This looks like so much fun! Congratulations to you and Lena on winning Shirley!

    Rowena @ rolala loves

  9. Congratulations, Shirley! Amazing job on the pizza ^.^

    1. Sharon, thanks dear! I'm sure you can handle the task with ease too!

  10. Wow, Shirley...what an experience! And congrats on your prize-winning pizza! Loved this post and the photos! ! Drooling over the lunch menu too!

    1. Kanak, glad you've enjoyed the mini tour of the Italian Restaurant & the event :D

  11. Ohh the pizza's look so yummy <3

    1. Diana, I'm hungry too looking at all the pizza creations!

  12. Replies
    1. HW, you're just like my teenage son! Anything goes with pizza!

  13. Ah!! All these yummy food!!! Great job on making a delicious pizza for the first time.

    1. Diana, thanks & hope you'll have a great time this coming weekend!

  14. pizza is my fav food, you are lucky to know how to make it :D it looks like you had great fun!

    1. Anja, I love a good pizza too & I had great fun at the workshop!

  15. Wow dear, you won. Congrats. Square pizza was innovative.

    1. Subha, thanks so much for your lovely note! xoxo

  16. congrats dear.looks like you had so much fun

  17. Congratulations to you both :D!
    All the entries were amazing! I love posts like this. It felt like I was there with you :P
    Thank you for taking us on the journey with you :D
    Such an amazing post and... I want pizza now hehe <3
    Sensitive Epidermis | Rainbow

    1. Rainbow, I'm thrilled that you've enjoyed the post & thanks so much for sharing your thoughts with us! Have a fabulous week, hun!

  18. Congratulations :) The pizza looks so cute :)

  19. I see a face I know! Chef Jaffery Othman used to be in KL! Looks like a fun time.

    1. Monica, that's so cool! You must be thrilled to see a familiar face :D

  20. Congratulations on winning the contest...what a great experience...I love the pictures Shirley!
    Enjoy the rest of your week dear :D

    1. Juliana, thanks dear! Glad you've enjoyed the tour as well. TGIF!

  21. What a great teacher you had :))) Lovely pics!
    Delicious pizza, in Italy we eat It very oft!!!


  22. Replies
    1. Lilith, always enjoy fun-loving workshops like these........

  23. Shirley this is awesome experience! I love this kind of workshop! the pizza look delicious too! The squid ink pasta is my favourite too.

    1. Cindy, I'm sure you'll have a great time too! TGIF, sweetie!

  24. Looks really fun- hope to try making pizza in future! Congratulations on winning the best pizza award!

  25. Are those rocket salad you added on top of the pizza? Pizza crust is the hardest to make =(

    1. FC, yap! I'm a huge fan of wild rockets & they're a great addition to salads & make great toppings too!

  26. Congrats Shirley for bashing a luxury prize! I am keen to taste the pizza you and your partner made.hehe

  27. Congratulations to you & partner! You are really like a King Midas with the magical touch on everything & it becomes Gold & Winner!!! Your pizza looked unique in square like a garden.

    1. Tan, thanks so much for being so kind! Count ourselves lucky! Heehee


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