A Passion to Inspire 2012

22 May 2012 by
A Passion to Inspire 2012

A Passion to Inspire 2012 saw 10 college chef and front-of-house teams battle it out with Bethany Jemison and Dylan Massey Ryan of Colchester Institute taking the title. Amanda Afiya reports

Bethany Jemison and Dylan Massey Ryan of Colchester Institute took the title for Passion to Inspire 2012 last week in a competition staged at their own college.

Jemison and Massey Ryan were among 10 chef and front-of house-teams who took part in the competition, organised by Murray Chapman of First Contact Chefs and John Jackaman of Infusions4chefs, aimed at all levels and years within colleges from NVQ, VRQ and BTEC.

It was based on teams of two working together to produce a two-course menu for two covers - comprising a main course and dessert, accompanied with a choice of wine for each course - in one-and-a-half hours. Following initial heats, five colleges were invited to take part in the final at Colchester Institute: Cambridge Regional College, City College Norwich, New Suffolk College, West Suffolk College, and Colchester Institute.

The competition, which was judged by Shara Ross of Hotel Felix, Nick Mills of Brasted's, Paul Boorman of Wivenhoe House, Phil Thompson of Brocket Hall, Paul Foster of Tuddenham Mill and Mark Poynton of restaurant Alimentum, asked the competitors, who were mentored by local chefs during the initial heats, to use local ingredients.

Jemison and Massey Ryan's winning menu comprised confit de canard (blushing duck breast, confit potatoes, orange spice infused gel, duck jus and duck crackling), served with a 2009 Chusclan Côte du Rhône, and salted caramel and chocolate ganache slice (chocolate tuile, salted caramel jelly, chocolate soil and a yogurt sorbet), accompanied by Muscat de Beaumes de Venise.

In addition to the title, Jemison and Massey Ryan will receive a one-week stage for two (with accommodation) at the Devonshire Arms Country House hotel in Yorkshire and a 12-course tasting menu at the hotel's Michelin-starred Burlington restaurant, along with an opportunity to work with its chef Steve Smith. They will also receive three tickets (for themselves and their lecturer) to attend the Skills for Chefs Conference, and a chance to dine at restaurant Alimentum in Cambridge where they will receive Mark Poynton's prestige menu.

Second place went to Mia Claydon and Thomas Garwood of West Suffolk College, third place went to James Durry and Rachel Speak, also of the Colchester Institute, while fourth place went to Hannah Garner and Simon Slack of Cambridge Regional College.

thank you from the organisers
Murray Chapman and John Jackaman would like to thank all the partners involved in Passion to Inspire 2012: Freedom Food, Gourmet Classic, Russums, Steelite, Dingley Dell Pork, Master Chefs of Great Britain, Craft Guild of Chefs, Association of Pastry Chefs, Anglian Free Range Eggs, Loch Duart Salmon, First Contact Chefs, Jamie Maxwell, Direct Meats, Callebaut Chocolate, Caterer and Hotelkeeper, Anglia Produce and Stoke Sauces, along with all the judges who took their time to help, support and mentor, the colleges and lecturers and the 100-plus students that were involved this year - thank you all for helping the future of tomorrow today.

If you wish to find out more or get involved as a college, judge, chef or producer, please contact John at j@infusions4chefs.co.uk or Murray at murray@firstcontactuk.com.

First place: Bethany Jemison and Dylan Massey Ryan of Colchester Institute took the title

Second place: Mia Claydon and Thomas Garwood of West Suffolk College

James Durry and Rachel Speak of Colchester Institute (left) came third; Hannah Garner and Simon Slack of Cambridge Regional College were fourth

View further photographs from the event at www.catererandhotelkeeper.com/inspire2012.

E-mail your comments to Amanda Afiya here.

If you have something to say on this story or anything else join the debate at Table Talk - Caterer's new networking forum. Go to www.catererandhotelkeeper.com/tabletalk

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