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Spring 2014: Welcome
And so it is, another year, another period of time dedicated to sourcing the freshest, most up-and-coming individuals in the culinary world – that’s right chaps, it’s competition season.
I started the year in Devon where the Major Series saw an undisputedly large amount of entries culminating in the highest standard of delivery that the Major team has ever seen with more gold awards being presented than in any other year.
Showing that the event is ever-present and on-trend, the series included a street food class where the chefs had just 20 minutes to cook and present two portions of a wok or noodle dish – exciting stuff!
Moving swiftly on, Brakes Group launched the 2013/14 Student Chef Team Challenge, with a high volume and calibre of entrants expected following a record-breaking 2012/13 competition.
As well we know, the annual UK-wide competition in its 21st year has become an eagerly anticipated fix ture on the colleges’ calendar offering a great opportunity for all full-time hospitality and catering college students to showcase their culinary skills, while developing ‘real life’ catering skills.
Hotelympia will be upon us very soon and both the student competitions mentioned above will have their respective finals at this prestigious event.
Competitions offer talented and passionate young chefs the perfect opportunity to demonstrate their ability to work in the unique, pressurised environment of a professional kitchen. Dishes should be stylish, beautifully presented and demonstrate great technique, as well as being packed full of clearly defined aromas, textures and flavours that complement rather than overcomplicate.
Judges are looking for competitors to creatively bring together the broadest range of future trends, highlight their individual talents with new ideas and ultimately, push the boundaries in quality, innovation and sustainability.
So, why compete? Competition gives you the opportunity to express yourself, demonstrate your skills and convey your passion for food to key industry leaders. To win, you must show flair, zest and innovation but of course the greatest winner of them all is an individual who can accept defeat graciously, with elegance and finesse and who can learn, develop and grow into the best possible chef they can be.
And so, all that remains for me to say is that I wish all those competing the very best of luck and I look forward to seeing you soon.
Click here for Stockpot magazine Spring 2014 digital edition