Later this month, the next generation of UK head chefs and sommeliers will demonstrate their skills, passion and expertise before panels of top names from across Britain's hospitality industry in the UK finals of the prestigious Chaîne des Rôtisseurs' Young Chef of the Year and Young Sommelier of the Year awards.
Open to all chefs under the age of 27 who are currently working in Chaîne des Rôtisseurs affiliated establishments across Great Britain, the Young Chef of the Year competition will see 10 finalists prepare a three-course meal using ingredients from a mystery "market basket" at the final on 12 June at the Food Services Wing, Worthy Down.
Judges for the chef competition include chairman Daniel Galmiche, executive chef at the Vineyard at Stockcross, Cyrille Pannier, executive chef of the Four Seasons in Hampshire, and Hayden Davies, development chef from P&O Cruises. Contestants will be scored on presentation, originality and taste, with consideration also given to general kitchen skills and approach to food hygiene.
Competing for the Young Chef title are: Neil Bell at Turnberry Resort, Turnberry; Tim Butler at Christchurch Harbour Hotel, Christchurch; Philip Cherryman at Millstream Hotel, Bosham; Daniel Marshall at the Imperial Hotel, Great Yarmouth; Matthew Robinson at the Old Deanery Hotel, Ripon; Indalecio Sebastiao at the Old Government House Hotel, Guernsey; Michael Thompson at the Marriott Grosvenor House, London; Lee Warren at Chartwells (Haileybury College); Ben Watson at Thornbury Castle Hotel, Gloucestershire, and Chris White at Lainston House Hotel, Winchester.
The winner will go on to compete in the international finals being held in Berlin in September 2012.
Separately, the Young Sommelier of the Year competition will take place at the Gaggenau Showrooms in London on 14 June.
Twelve finalists will compete to demonstrate their extensive knowledge of wines and other alcoholic drinks before a panel of expert judges chaired by Gerard Basset, proprietor at Hotel Terravina and with judges Steven Spurrier, Decanter‘s consulting editor, Dimitri Mesnard of the Jackson Family Estates, Nigel Wilkinson of Boutinot, Philip Evins, chairman WWAS, and Nicolas Clerc, head sommelier at D&D Restaurants.
There are three components to the competition, including a service test is designed to showcase a finalist's knowledge, poise, competence and professionalism. This test includes Champagne service, food and wine pairing and role playing with a judge as diner-consumer.
Competing are: Loic Avril, Benjamin Beranger and Lukasz Koloziejczyk at the Fat Duck, Maidenhead; Julie Baron, Roumain Bourger, Stefan Neumann and Nerea Sorribes at the Vineyard at Stockcross, Newbury; Arnaud Baudary and Antonin Dubuis at Maze, London; Tobias Brauweiler at Ellenborough Park, Cheltenham; Peter Foulds at Lainston House, Winchester and Tanguy Martin at Hotel Terravina, Woodlands.
The finalists were successfully shortlisted from a host of national entries, each of which had to be under the age of 35, currently working in Great Britain and sponsored by a member of the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs to qualify. The winner of the national final will have the opportunity to compete in the fiercely contested international finals on 21 September in Cape Town, South Africa.
The winners of both competitions will be announced at a prestigious awards dinner being held at the Dorchester Hotel on 20th June.
By Katherine Alano
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