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article imageSpanish ham slicer a cut above the rest, wins world record

By Anne Sewell     Nov 27, 2013 in Food
Paris - Dry-cured ham, or jamón, is an essential food item in Spain and the guys who slice this ham are pretty important too. They have a special name, "cortadores", and they often enter competitions or in this case, beat world records.
Noé Bonillo Ramos, originally from the Valencia region of Spain, is based in Paris. He is part of a national association of ham slicers and has shown incredible endurance is taking his art to a whole new level. He has been slicing jamón for around eight years and is getting pretty darn good at the job.
According to Las Provincias (in Spanish) the association of ham slicers is sponsored by Swiss knife makers, Victorinox, among other companies and you can see a very impressive range of knives in the video above.
On Monday, Bonillo beat the Guinness World Record for the amount of time spent slicing hams. His record was 25 hours, according to the Spanish media, as compared to the previous record of 24 hours and 45 minutes held by Fran Alonso from Tenerife in the Canary Islands.
Noe Bonillo won a Guinness World Record for slicing ham
Noe Bonillo won a Guinness World Record for slicing ham
Yes, cutting it close, for sure, but he did win and he cut, in total, 30 hams, amounting to a total of 92.685 kilograms of that great jamón.
After the event, a happy but tired Bonillo said that it was the encouragement and support of the people around him that kept him going so long.
However, it should be taken into account that the "cortador" has trained specially for this event, in sessions of up to 30 hours, which shows he could have gone on even longer.
He practiced under the eye of both a personal trainer as well as the manager of the Paris restaurant where he is employed, doing the movements, over and over until finally practice made perfect.
Bonillo said that it was "a record for the whole team" once it was all over. He added that without them, it would not have been possible.
"It was very good," he told Efe, confessing that he was a little "overwhelmed" during the last few minutes by "the desire and enthusiasm to enjoy the record that I knew I was going to get."
He told ABC (in Spanish) that what helped him to get through the experience was that he is ambidextrous, allowing him a 360-degree ham rotation. Also, while he was entitled to 5 minute breaks each hour, he decided to spend stretches of up to 5 hours without a break, so that he could enjoy a real rest of 20 minutes, especially during the night.
You can watch Bonillo in action in the video above. Another video can be viewed on this website.
Now if you are thinking about that mountain of ham that Bonillo sliced so neatly from the bone, and getting a little hungry, the good news is that it will be donated to the Benedictine nuns of Montmartre Sacre Coeur, and if served on individual plates, would look something like this:
Slices of dry-cured ham (jamon).
Slices of dry-cured ham (jamon).
More about Spain, Valencia, jamon, Ham, Slicer
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