Craft Guild announces Young National Chef of the Year

YNCOTY 2019, Henry Wadsworth
Following an incredibly tense live final at The Restaurant Show (2 October), the Craft Guild of Chefs crowned Henry Wadsworth, chef de partie at Belmond Le Manoir Aux Quat’Saisons, the winner of its 2019 Young National Chef of the Year competition.

He served a menu of: baba ganoush, medjool dates, preserved lemon, tempura; poached halibut Veronique for main with Suffolk red grapes, cucumber and verjus; and a caramelized pear tart.

Aaron Middleton, sous chef from Hide Above, took home second place followed by Conner Farrer, chef de partie from The Ritz (London) in third.

Mark Sargeant, chair of judges and ambassador for Young National Chef of the Year, said: “The standard was really high today and the competition was close, especially for second and third.

“However, for me, Henry was really on form and deserved that top spot. He’s been part of the competition for two years but today he just nailed it. His food was simple, delicious and spot on, and as soon as I tasted his three fantastically consistent dishes, it was clear that he was the winner.”

David Mulcahy said it was a ‘phenomenal day,' praising the chefs for making this year’s heats the ‘smoothest yet’ and for showcasing their outstanding knowledge, skill and creativity in the kitchen.

10 YNCOTY finalists

  • Jamie Mackinnon, The Seafood Restaurant (St Andrews) (Sheffield heat)
  • Henry Wadsworth, Belmond Le Manoir (London heat winner)
  • Jonathan Ferguson, Restaurant Andrew Fairlie
  • Thomas Reeve, L’Enclume
  • Arron Tye, Grosvenor Pulford
  • Aaron Middleton, The Above Restaurant
  • Gilles Varone, Petrus - highest achiever in the Craft Guild of Chefs’ Graduate Awards
  • Luke Turner, L’Enclum - British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year winner
  • Supatthra Viriphan, Chewton Glen - represents World Skills

You can continue to follow the story of the competitions on Twitter with @Craft_Guild and #NCOTY and #YNCOTY and on the website at

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