Twenty young chefs and college students all under the age of 23 have made it through to the semi-finals of the Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards 2015 following a paper judging.
The successful young chefs from the regional heats will then be invited to a mentor day, based in London including masterclasses with leading chefs, to prepare them for the final's butchery and fishmongery tests, a mystery basket challenge and the creation of a classic main and dessert. The final exam takes place on 27 August at Birmingham University College.
To follow in the footsteps of former graduates, such as Richard Edwards, head chef at the Michelin-starred Lords of the Manor in Upper Slaughter, candidates must score a minimum of 85% to become a graduate.
Awards co-ordinator Steve Munkley, executive chef of the Royal Garden hotel in Kensington and vice-president of the Craft Guild of Chefs, commented: "Some of the semi-finalists have already won some fantastic awards this year, but this is the chance to pit their talents and skill against themselves, which involves a whole different mentality.
"We wish them all the best in making it to the final and achieve something that is a real boost for the CV and very often a turning point in a chef's career."
Chairman of the examiners for the third consecutive year will be consultant chef Paul Gayler, formerly executive chef of London's Lanesborough hotel.
The Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards 2015 semi-finals are:
•Laurel Taylor, Royal Garden hotel, London
•Nicholas Cottrell, Dolphin House Brazzerie, Plymouth
•Reece Cosier, the Landmark London
•Alex Murtagh, the Landmark London
•Olivia Baggley, Wiltons, London
•Andrew Potter, the Dairy, London
•Grainne Kerr, Browns Restaurant, Londonderry
•Liam Argyle, Saunton Sands Hotel, Braunton, Devon
•Drew Snaith, Brunswick House, London
•Louise Roberts, Lexington Catering
•Miranda Lucien-Johnson, Adam Handling at Caxton, London
•Josie Thompson, Westminster Kingsway College, London
•Christopher Davis, Westminster Kingsway College, London
•Daniel Catalano, The White Horse Pub, Harpenden, Hertfordshire
•Andrew Hockley, Queenwood Golf Club, Ottershaw, Surrey
•Aaron Duffy, Grants Restaurant, Omagh
•Charlie Aggett, Hartwell House Hotel, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire
•James Toth, The Cross at Kenilworth
•Chloe Fella, Food Academy, Leeds
•James Carpenter, Food Academy, Leeds