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British BBQ Battle Champion 2016 announced

30 June 2016 by
British BBQ Battle Champion 2016 announced

Martin Wheeler of the University of Reading has been crowned the 2016 British BBQ Battle Champion after a live cook-off at Blenheim Palace.

Contestants across five different categories battled it out both within their categories and for the overall champion position. They were all tasked with creating a pre-submitted three-course meal that can be prepared on their Crown Verity barbecues, can be cooked within one hour and includes at least one Lion sauce.

The judges were impressed by Wheeler's menu of hot smoked eel with barbecue apple sauce and celeriac Waldorf; hogget lamb cannon with beetroot khubz, burnished kale and peppers, sweet chilli sauce and baba ganoush; and coconut sponge with mango chutney, caramelised mango and Pina Colada sabayon.

Wheeler said: "I really enjoyed competing in such a well organised cooking event. The Crown Verity barbecues that we used are a fantastic bit of kit and I can't wait to receive my winning prize to try out some new dishes. It was a brilliant day and to win was just amazing."

All finalists won a Sharp R21AT Commercial Microwave, a Simply Stainless Professional Chef's table, Smeg Mixer, full set of Lion Sauces and British BBQ Battle chef's whites. Wheeler also came away with a Crown Verity MCB-36 barbecue, worth over £3,000, and £100 of One4All vouchers.

Led by head judge Ben Bartlett, president of the British BBQ Association, all menus were judged by Crown Verity president Bill Verity, chairman of the British Culinary Federation Jim Eaves, and last year's BBQ Battle Champion Gareth Finney of the Albion Taverna. Each judge marked the chefs' dishes on taste, texture and appearance. Marks were also awarded for use of the Crown Verity barbecue and hygiene practices. 2016 also marked the introduction of ‘The People's Vote', which allowed spectators to select their favourite contestant.

Bartlett said: "I was very impressed with the individuality of all contestants' dishes and the presentation had a real summer flair. All the judges were unanimous selecting the winner who showed consistency throughout and superb use of the Crown Verity."

Ray Hall, managing director of main sponsor R H Hall, said: "This event keeps going from strength to strength, with extraordinary dishes yet again produced by all competitors."

The full list of winners:

Pub, bars & restaurants

Winner: Dave Alebon, Stonegate

Runner up: Phillip Hunt, Marston's Inns & Taverns

Leisure & contract caterers

Winner: Logan Lloyd, Baxterstorey

Runner up: Simon Rapkin, Food Events Ltd

University

Winner: Martin Wheeler, University of Reading

Runner up: Ash Spencer, Westminster Kingsway College

Hotel

Winner: Gerald Quadros, The Lensbury

Runner up: Matthew Hill, Down Hall Country House Hotel

People's vote

Winner: Simon Rapkin, Food Events Ltd 2016

BBQ Battle Champion

Winner: Martin Wheeler, University of Reading

Finalists announced for the 2016 British BBQ Battle >>

2014 British BBQ champion announced >>

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