Danny Hoang from Colette's at the Grove and winner of the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Awards of Excellence has been crowned Young National Chef of the Year 2016.
The Westminster Kingsway graduate, who won a gold medal at EuroSkills 2014 and a medallion of excellence for cooking at WorldSkills 2015, beat Danny Young of Northcote, Langho, Lancashire, into second place in the competition. The Ritz's award-winning chef Ruth Hansom came third.
Hoang, who works with last year's National Chef of the Year winner Russell Bateman at the Rickmansworth property, served a starter of quail leg and breast, watercress and parsley sauce, hay-baked baby beetroots and nasturtium, a main course of seared hake, baby leeks, vinaigrette of sea vegetables, mussels and celeriac, beet batter scraps, mussel cream sauce, and a lightly spiced bread and butter pudding with vanilla ice-cream and malt custard, pickled blackberries and Braeburn apples for dessert.
Judges included Mark Sargeant, Alyn Williams, Christopher Basten, Sophie Mitchell, Julie Walsh, Ben Tish and Brad McDonald.
The winner and runners up will be taken on a food trends study trip to Scotland by headline sponsor Knorr.
In addition to the title, Hoang also received an exclusively designed winner's plate from sponsor Churchill China and £500 worth of product, a £1,250 voucher to spend within Lockharts' product range, a unique gastronomic trip to one of the world's top restaurants courtesy of Lockhart Catering Equipment and £1,500 worth of activity voucher from Knorr.
Eight chefs took place at the final at the Restaurant Show at London's Kensington Olympia today.
The other finalists were Arthur Quinn of the Punch Bowl Inn in Cumbria, Elly Wentworth of the Manor House hotel in Castle Combe; Connor Godfrey of Wiltons restaurant in London; Ray Steplin of the House of Commons, and Victoria Scupham of the Royal Household.
Hoang said: "I've put a lot of work into it. If I had to sum up I how I feel, it's definitely been worth all the sacrifice that goes into not only holding down a job but also the additional effort to compete. It really pushes you to the limit. I can't believe I've achieved it.
"It helps that Russell [Bateman] is my head chef. He won National Chef of the Year last year, and he knows what it's like to compete. He pushed me in the right places but didn't hawk over me so I had the space to really assess myself."
Young National Chef of the Year is run in partnership with Knorr. It is open to chefs aged 18-23 and sits alongside the National Chef of The Year.
Last year's winner was Luke Selby, of Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons.
Young National Chef of the Year was created to celebrate and develop the culinary skills of young British chefs. It draws successful candidates from a wide range of UK-wide chef competitions including the Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards, Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Young Chef, Young Welsh Chef of the Year, Young Scottish Chef of the year, Young Game Chef of the Year, Young Grampian Chef of the Year, Young North East Chef of the Year, South West Young Chef of the Year, The Master Chefs of Great Britain Young Chef of the Year, North West Chef of the Year, Guernsey Young Chef of the Year and UK Skills.