One of the highlights of this past autumn for me was attending the Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards Lunch at the Royal Garden Hotel. This lunch not only recognized outstanding and talented young people, it also celebrated the 15th Anniversary of the Awards.
Steve Munkley, Vice President of the Craft Guild of Chefs and the founder of the awards, welcomed guests and introduced the Graduate Award finalists. He also noted that 25 former Graduate Award achievers were attending the lunch and three – Richard Edwards, Mark Froydenlund and Salin Kaizim – were in the kitchen preparing the lunch. Steve went on to say that a total of seven chefs made the grade in the 2017 final exam – five in the kitchen examination and two in pastry.
Following the exceptional lunch, an excellent video further explained what is involved in the awards program’s rigorous testing program. According to Steve, “We had candidates from some of the UK’s top restaurants. That is a testament to how highly regarded these awards are. We now have more than 60 graduate chefs in our Hall of Fame.”* So much to be proud of!
The young people who achieved this distinguished award include:
Gilles Varone from Petrus Restaurant
Joe Payne from Andre Garrett Restaurant at Cliveden House
Vince Vermeulen and William Keeble from Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons
Lewis Kuciers from the Black Bull at Blidworth.
All excelled in the kitchen.
Amy Rose Plumb from Titchwell Manor Hotel
Hannah Catley from Chiltern Firehouse. The pastry achievers.
This was a delightful, delicious way to celebrate 15 years.
*Quote taken from an article on the Graduate Awards which appeared in Stockpot, The Craft Guild of Chefs magazine.
Linguini Crab, Thai shellfish consommé Prepared by Richard Edwards, Executive Chef-Lartington Hall
Slow Roasted Gressingham Duck with a Hazelnut and Caramel Glaze, Ceps, Rosti, Elderberries and Cabbage Pickle Prepared by Mark Fraydenlund, Chef Patron-Marcus Waring at the Berkeley
Vanilla Muhallebi, Peach & Raspberry Jelly, Caramelised Almond Shard, Peach Sorbet & Raspberry-Rose Sauce Prepared by Selin Kaizim, Chef Director-Oklava