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Craft Guild of Chefs seeks young chef winners for Chef of Year 2014

05 March 2014 by
Craft Guild of Chefs seeks young chef winners for Chef of Year 2014

The Craft Guild of Chefs is looking for young award-winning chefs to test their skills at this year's Young National Chef of the Year competition.

The final will judge eight contestants aged 18 to 23, each drawn from different chef competitions around the country.

The first four competitors will be made up of the winners of the British Culinary Federation awards, the Academy of Culinary Arts Awards of Excellence, World Skills UK and the Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards respectively.

These semi-finals will be held at Sheffield College on 10 June and at Le Cordon Bleu in London on 25 June, to coincide with the National Chef of the Year competition (which last year was won by Hayden Groves).

The final winner's name will then be revealed at an awards ceremony following the Restaurant Show, at Earls Court 2, on October 7. The victorious chef will be crowned Young National Chef of the Year 2014, and receive a package of prizes, including the chance to take part in study trips and work placements.

Last year's winner was Ben Champkin from The Elephant restaurant in Torquay, whose winning dishes included fallow deer with burnt onion and pickled apple; a rack of turbot with lardo Iberico and fennel pollen; and a cherry bakewell dessert.

He is set to undertake a range of industry experiences in Scotland as part of his prize, and has called the competition a "great stepping stone" for young chefs hoping to enter more senior competitions in future.

Last year's runners up were Ruth Hansom from the Ritz, followed by Daniel Akrigg from Rogan & Company, while the judging panel included top chefs Brian Turner, Ben Tish, Paul Foster, Christopher Basten and Alyn Williams.

Speaking of this year's competition, competition organiser and vice president of the Craft Guild of Chefs David Mulcahy, said: "The standard of last year's competition was fantastic and the judges were blown away by the skills demonstrated by the finalists. I can't wait to see this year's talent."

Stefan Horsnell, category marketing director at competition partner Knorr, Unilever Food Solutions, said that challenging young chefs in this way "instils confidence" and "raises the bar on British cooking for years to come".

Ben Champkin wins Young National Chef of the Year 2013 >>

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