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South Essex College Wins ‘UK Young Seafood Chef of the Year’

23 June 2014

UK - It was a nail-bitingly close final at the 18th Young Seafood Chef of the Year competition, sponsored by Seafish. Youngsters from around the country, including three Scottish colleges for the first time, competed to win the esteemed title of ‘Young Seafood Chef of the Year’. Celebrity chef Jean-Christophe Novelli led the panel of judges given the difficult task of identifying the UK’s next major talents.

The event was held at the Grimsby Institute and saw teams of young chefs from around the country take to the kitchens to prepare the dishes that led them to victory in the regional heats that have taken place around the UK in recent months.

The judging panel comprised of Seafish representative, Nikki Hawkins, Serge Nolent, Head of Culinary for Youngs, Franck Pontais of Food Creations and Jean-Christophe Novelli.

(L-R) Andy Gray, Trade Marketing Manager, Seafish
Jaine Turner, Thermomix
Amy Hawthorne, South Essex College
Michael Balding, South Essex College
Jean-Christophe Novelli, Chef and Judge

Jean-Christophe Novelli said: ''As a keen supporter of this kind of event for many years, I feel that culinary recognition in any shape of form helps to develop both an individual and companies alike.''

Nine different colleges made it to the final of the event, with merits given to the Grimsby Institute, City College Norwich, Bury College, West College Scotland and New College Lanarkshire. SRUC Elmwood, University College Birmingham and Preston College came in at 2nd, 3rd and 4th respectively. All of the colleges received educational materials from Seafish.

Nikki Hawkins, Events Manager at Seafish, said: “As with every year, I am delighted to support this competition in running the regional heats around the country, and taking my place on the panel on behalf of Seafish. We are always blown away by the high standards we see from the students at every stage of the competition.

“Seafish is committed to supporting the seafood industry for a sustainable and successful future. These chefs represent that future in an industry which sees us set a world leading example, and it’s great to see so many of them showcasing the amazing seafood that is available in the UK.”

Each of the nine teams produced a three course menu, which was served to the judges, sponsors and guests attending the event, as well as producing a set of courses for display. After the judge’s deliberations, the winning team was awarded their title and prizes by Jean-Christophe Novelli.

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