10th South West Chef of the Year competition – judged by Michael Caines, James Tanner, Simon Hulstone, Mark Hix, Nathan Outlaw and … are you crying yet?

It’s important you don’t get intimidated in competitions, but entrants into the 10th South West Chef of the Year competition would be allowed a whimper when they see the judging panel includes Michael Caines, Nathan Outlaw, James Tanner, Simon Hulstone, Mark Hix, Nathan Outlaw and more.

Entries are now open for the competition aimed at experienced pros, up and coming young chefs and amateur cooks.

A new class is being launched this year, the Junior Class, aimed at children aged 11 to 16.

This class will initially be held on a county basis with selected entrants being invited to a heat in their own county in September.

The county heats will be judged by well-known chefs in each county and the final of this class will be judged by the main judging panel.

Michael Caines, the competition sponsor and head judge, said: “This competition highlights the outstanding talents of chefs and home cooks across the South West and their commitment to using the best ingredients that the region has to offer.

“We are looking for someone who can demonstrate knowledge and skill in devising and preparing memorable dishes with real flair.”

In addition to their skills and experience, the competition enables competitors to demonstrate their understanding of and commitment to the diverse array of high quality ingredients produced in the South West whilst simultaneously raising awareness of its diversity and accessibility.

John Sheaves, chief executive of  Taste of the West, said: “We are very proud that the South West Chef of the Year competition offers classes for professional chefs, home cooks and now, with the launch of the Junior class, the budding young chefs of tomorrow.

“With the opportunity to demonstrate their talents for our prestigious panel of judges, a rare gathering of the finest chefs in the South West, the work of the competitors is made easier with the extensive availability of regionally produced ingredients of the highest quality.”

The Judging panel consists of:

Michael Caines MBE –  GidleighPark and ABode Hotels

Paul Ainsworth – Number 6 and Rojano’s in the Square, Padstow

Peter Gorton – Gorton’s, Tavistock

Chris Tanner – Tanners Restaurant and Barbican Kitchen

James Tanner – Tanners Restaurant and Barbican Kitchen

Ian Webber – ABode Exeter

Simon Hulstone – The Elephant Restaurant, Torquay

Matt Mason – The Jack in the Green, Rockbeare

Neil Haydock – Watergate Bay Hotel, Newquay

Darrin Hosegrove – Ashburton Cookery School

Mark Hix – Hix Restaurant, Lyme Regis and London

Hywel Jones – Lucknam Park, Bath

Nathan Outlaw – Restaurant Nathan Outlaw and Seafood  & Grill

Rob Rees MBE – The Cotswold Chef

Entrants for the Professional and Young Professional classes, sponsored by Exeter College and Paramount Personnel, must submit a proposed two-course menu for two people (a starter and a main course) using principally produce from the South West and incorporating two specific ingredients nominated by the judging panel.

The two ingredients which must be incorporated are:

Lamb- saddle, belly and/or kidney (any or all of these may be used) to be supplied by Andrew James Butchery

Hake – to be supplied by Kingfisher Brixham

Selected entrants will be invited to attend the semi-final at Exeter College on Saturday October 12, where they will be asked to prepare a two-course meal submitted with their entry.

Those selected for the final will be invited to return to the college on Monday October 28 when they will be provided with a mystery box of ingredients and given a specified time to prepare one dish using its contents.

Entrants in the junior class are asked to submit a recipe for their favourite dish (either a starter or a main course) incorporating produce principally from the South West.

Selected entrants will be invited to attend a county heat at their county’s leading catering college.

An esteemed chef in each county will mentor the county winner and help them to prepare for the final on Saturday October 19 at Ashburton Cookery School.

Selected entrants for the South West’s Best Dish class, sponsored by Ashburton Cookery School, will be invited to attend the final at the school on Saturday October 19  to prepare the two-course meal submitted with their entry.

Additional awards will be presented for Best Dish, Best Menu, Best Use of Regional Produce and Best Presentation.

Closing date for entries is August 30.

An awards presentation dinner will be held at the Exeter Golf and Country Club on Monday October 28, where guests will enjoy a meal prepared by a team of highly regarded guest chefs who are also previous winners of the competition, including John Walton from Paul Ainsworth at Number 6 Padstow, Scott Paton from The Horn of Plenty and Matthew Downing from Magdelen Chapter.

Visit www.southwestchef.co.uk for further details.

 

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