October 2016: Welcome

24/10/2016 11:10
Here’s hoping this finds you all well rested and recuperated from your summer holidays, vacations and mini breaks.

It’s been a busy few months in the Craft Guild calendar. We recently visited Copenhagen for an amazing Scandinavian culinary tour in glorious sunshine, looking at food festivals and markets, organic farms, roof gardens, sustainable hotels and innovative ‘Noma-esque’ restaurants.

Back at home, the Graduate Awards presentation was a great evening of achievement and celebration at the Sheraton Park Lane, with the girls outnumbering the boys this year.

Following the National Chef of the Year mentor day hosted by the Grove Hotel, where we walked through the vast walled garden before a great lunch overseen by Harry Lomas, we had the event itself at the Restaurant Show. If you haven’t heard the news already, you can catch up on the action and read about our newly crowned National Chef of the Year and Young National Chef of the Year on page 34.

This summer’s Universal Cookery and Food Festival - our fifth can you believe - was the biggest yet, with record attendance and great feedback. Now the bar has been raised we’re busy planning next year’s visit to Padstow. Turn to page 40 to read all about the star-studded line up at Laverstoke, which included Angela Hartnett, Brett Graham, Daniel Clifford and many others.

After a kind invitation from the British Culinary Federation chairman, Matt Davies, I attended the British Culinary Federation Dinner at the Botanical Gardens in Birmingham where the achievements of some very talented people were recognised.

September also brought me two amazing days of clay pigeon shooting; one was the annual Chefs Go Shooting event and the other was a Help for Heroes charity shoot.

Looking forward, the hunt is on to find our new media partner to help us communicate our news on the vast amount of activities, events and competitions the Guild participates in and delivers month in, month out.

Meanwhile, exciting times are ahead with new business partner Iceland onboard and set to roll out its proposed nationwide instore marketing campaign incorporating the Guild’s logo.

Personally, I can’t wait to host the business partners’ lunch this November at the home of the Worshipful Company of Cooks, Innholders Hall in the City, where the catering is under the direction of the talented Herbert Berger.

Next stop Florida, with a food study tour behind the culinary scenes at Disney…

Lee Maycock, National Chairman

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