Angela Hartnett was one of the big winners at this week's Cateys, picking up the coveted Chef Award.
Hartnett, who is chef-patron of the Michelin-starred Murano restaurant in London, became the first female chef in the Catey's 26-year history to receive the prestigious accolade.
Others shortlisted for the award were Gordon Ramsay Holdings chef Jason Atherton, chef director of the Michelin-starred Maze in London, and John Williams, executive at London's Ritz, to win the Chef Award.
Hartnett, who also runs London's York and Albany restaurant for Gordon Ramsay Holdings, said the opening of her two operations in the past year had undoubtedly helped her to secure the title. "Obviously they helped. We opened Murano and it's been a great success, we opened York and Albany and it's continued doing well and although we've had a bit of rough ride in the company we're stronger than ever. The prospects are looking very good."
She continued: "I think in this industry, although we're all very nervous about things at the moment, the good places are really riding the storm."
Asked if being the first female chef to win the Chef Catey meant more to her, she said: "Of course it does, big style - that almost means as much as getting the award itself. It makes it easier as well that I seem to be the first, it seems very arrogant, but it's just the way it's worked for me."
Hartnett said she was also thrilled for other winners from the night, particularly Raymond Blanc, winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award. "Raymond is a fantastic ambassador for this industry, he's always promoting Britain and British produce and I think that Nigel Haworth] and Craig [Bancroft] are just top winners. lt's been a lovely awards ceremony and great to see quite a few women up there as well."
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