Full-time chefs, pastry chefs and waiters aged between 20 and 26 have been invited to enter this year's Royal Academy of Culinary Arts' Annual Awards of Excellence (AAE).
The standard is tough - judges can choose to award prizes to all or none of the entrants depending on their level of achievement. There is no set first, second or third place, but anyone who does reach the desired standard in their category wins the AAE.
However, the entrants with the highest marks in each section will respectively be crowned the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Young Chef, Young Pastry Chef and Young Waiter 2014 at a separate Gala Presentation Dinner.
Each highest-scoring entrant will be presented with prizes worth over £2,000 including Victorinox knives, a trophy, and an educational trip that in previous years has included visits to New Orleans, Mexico, Champagne, Tuscany and Barbados.
Successful entrants will go on to the regional semi-finals in April before being judged at the final in May.
The skills under scrutiny - depending on category â' will include butchery, varied recipe preparation, chocolate and sugar work, baking, product knowledge, technical skills, interpersonal relations and teamwork.
The closing date is Friday 14 February.
Last year's winners included entrants from Claridge's, Le Manoir Aux Quat' Saisons, William Curley, the Ritz, Odette's, Le Gavroche and Gleneagles.
Founded in 1980, the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts seeks to raise standards and awareness of food and service, and promote high-level training for young people in hospitality.