The Academy of Food & Wine Service (AFWS) has named the four restaurant managers that have made it to the final of the 2012 UK Restaurant Manager of the Year competition.
After a tough semi-final testing a range of practical and management skills, the finalists are:
Tobias Barfoot, the Ambrette restaurant, Margate
Clement Joseph, RAC, London
Peter McAlister, Culloden Estate and Spa, Belfast
Paul Taylor, TGI's, Luton
The four will join last year's runner-up Paul Shanahan, assistant food & beverage director at London's Syon Park, Waldorf Astoria, at the final on 22 October at the Westbury, London W1.
The competition tests entrants' front-of-house skills, ability to manage and inspire a team, and business acumen.
Eight restaurant managers qualified for the semi-final, at which the contestants had to answer a broad-ranging 15-minute questionnaire, write a response to a customer's letter of complaint, present ideas on social marketing, and tackle a crisis scenario testing their ability to deal with a typical, but stressful situation and manage a team of staff through the problem.
"The semi-finalists had a tough, but enjoyable day and we are delighted that this year's entries came from a broad spectrum of establishments, from contract caterers to high street chains," said Sophie Roberts-Brown, AFWS executive director.
The winner will receive a stage in a top New York establishment, where they will gain a unique insight into the running of various departments.
By James Stagg
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