Skip to main content
18th October 2023

Compass reveals Senior & Young Chef of the Year winners

Written by: Edward Waddell
Gary Wolfe, from Restaurant Associates, received gold in the Compass Senior Chef of the Year competition followed by Bruce Morrison from ESS Energy who took home silver and Izabela Ginter from ESS Energy who was awarded bronze.

Held at a Cookery School in Winchester, the contest shows off the company’s best-in-class culinary talent with an opportunity for learning, development and networking.

Finalists in the Senior Chef of the Year category prepared three dishes in just over two hours. The winning courses that were prepared by Gary, included a delicious Tartlet of artichokes, Dayboat Southcoast Turbot and Norfolk Royal Russet Apple Pie.

Commenting on his win, Gary said: “The Compass Chef of the Year competition has been a brilliant process to be involved in and I have learnt a lot on this journey. It’s a huge honour to win this award, thank you so much to the team for their support.”

George Charles-Pulfer from Restaurant Associates won the Young Chef of the Year competition, taking gold. Silver went to Aga Bernaciak of Restaurant Associates and bronze to Isabel Cureton from ESS Defence.

The Young Chef of the Year competitors (chefs to the level of Chef de Partie), were required to prepare two dishes - a starter and a main course in two hours. Judges were ‘wowed’ by George’s dishes of leek, yeast and cashew starter, followed by Herdwick lamb and carrot.

The process was judged on several factors including the sustainability of menus, seasonality and keeping waste to a minimum, with competitors tasked to produce one plant-based course.

The chefs were judged by national chairman of the Craft Guild of Chefs Matt Owens, chef consultant Simon Stocker, head of ingredients and Workplace Managed menus at Foodbuy UK Bob Brown and culinary director at Compass Group UK & Ireland Nick Vadis.

Vadis added: “Every year I am bowled over by our amazing chefs. They show dedication, creativity and skill. They are mentored by others within the business and throughout the process I watch them grow and develop. It’s been a great day – a massive well done to everyone involved.”