Andrew Tabberner from Coast restaurant wins Junior Chef of Wales

17 February 2015 by
Andrew Tabberner from Coast restaurant wins Junior Chef of Wales

Andrew Tabberner from Will Holland's two AA Rosette Coast restaurant has been named winner of the Junior Chef of Wales competition.

The contest gave four finalists (split between North and South Wales) three hours to prepare a three-course meal for four people, with all receiving praise from the judges for the high standard of their dishes, and making it difficult to choose a winner.

Tabberner (South Wales) cooked a menu of sea bass carpaccio with yoghurt and cauliflower pannacotta, a Welsh pork tasting plate with cider fondant potato, and a poached forced rhubarb with white chocolate and vanilla cheesecake.

He has now won an all-expenses-paid trip to represent Wales at the Junior Forum in May 2016, to be held as part of the World Association of Chefs' Societies Congress in Athens, Greece. Holland, who mentored Tabberner through the process, said: "I am really proud of Andrew. He decided to do the competition and it was him who got up at 6 o'clock to practice before starting work, and he was still there at midnight practicing after work."

Tabberner himself said he was "ecstatic but drained" at his win, and thanked the team at the Coast restaurant, as well as his family and girlfriend, for their support.

The judging panel comprised Culinary Association of Wales president Colin Gray, chairman John Retallick, and Michelin-starred chef Shaun Hill, of the Walnut Tree Inn in Abergavenny.

The other finalists were Vivienne Read, 20, commis chef at Celtic Manor Resort, Newport (South Wales); Sam Ricketts, 20, chef de partie at Signatures restaurant, Conwy; and Arron Tye, 20, demi chef de partie at Shared Olive, Hawarden (both North Wales). To take part, competitors needed to be between 17 and 23 years of age on 1 February 2015, and of Welsh descent, or studying and working towards a culinary competition in Wales.

Judge Retallick described the young chefs as "virtually at the top of their game".

Organised by the Culinary Association of Wales every two years, the competition is sponsored by the Welsh Government to promote the Food and Drink Wales brand.

Eleven chefs selected to compete in Junior Chef of Wales contest >>

National Junior Chef of Wales showcases menu at gala dinner >>

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