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Great Britain 2012 Young Professionals Awards

London, June 20, 2012

The winners of our Young Professionals competitions were revealed at a glittering ceremony at the prestigious Dorchester Hotel in London in June. This was an occasion for us all to celebrate the talents, enthusiasm and desire for learning of the up and coming young people in our member establishments.

Taking the top accolade of Young Chef of the Year was Daniel Marshall of the Imperial  Hotel, Great Yarmouth (Bailliage of Anglia), while Arnaud Bardary of The Maze by Gordon Ramsay (Bailliage of London) scooped Young Sommelier of the Year.

The inaugural event was attended by members from every local Bailliage in Great Britain together with people representing our partners plus guests from both the industry and the press. It was opened by some remarks by Lord Thurso highlighting the importance of attention to detail and of service standards. On the night, the menu designed by Executive Chef, Henry Brosi, and the service were everything that Lord Thurso could have wished for.

The final of the National Jeunes Chefs Rôtisseurs Competition was held the week before in the Food Services Wing at Worthy Down in Hampshire with 10 finalists under the direction of Conseiller Culinaire Vic Laws assisted by Vice-Conseiller Culinaire Rosie Stewart. The judging team was lead by Maître Rôtisseur Daniel Galmiche, Executive Chef of the Vineyard at Stockcross, assisted by Cyrille Pannier, Executive Chef of the Four Seasons Hampshire and Hadyn Davis, Development Chef for Carnival UK.

The three top-placed contestants from the cook-off were invited to the Awards Dinner where they would learn their final placing. Daniel Marshall being declared the winner in the extremely close competition meant that narrowly missing out were Runner-up Lee Warren from Charwells at Haileybury (Bailliage of Thames Valley) and Neil Bell from Turnberry (Bailliage of Scotland) taking Third place.

The National Final of the Jeunes Sommeliers Competition was held in the same week at the Wigmore Street showroom of our main partner, Gaggenau. Twelve finalists fought all day to impress the judges with their knowledge of wine, ability to blind taste, their service skills of decanting and opening champagnes and most importantly of matching wines with food. 

Chairman of judges, Echanson Gerard Basset, was supported by Steven Spurrier, International Wine Judge and Consulting Editor of Decanter Magazine, Maître Sommelier Dimitri Mesnard, Bailli Délégué Philip Evins, Maître Sommelier Nigel Wilkinson and Nicholas Clerc. Again, the three placed winners on the day did not know until the dinner in what position they would be placed.

Gerard Basset said that “The knowledge, creativity and professionalism of the entrants never fails to amaze and impress the judging panel and although we can only have one winner the standard at the top of this competition is outstanding.

In an equally close battle Arnaud Bardary fought for top Young Sommelier against Loic Avril of The Fat Duck, Maidenhead (Bailliage of Wessex) who took second place and Romain Bourger of The Vineyard, Newbury (Bailliage Wessex) who came third. 

On the night  the awards were presented by Jonathan Raggett, Managing Director of the Red Carnation Group of Hotels. Prizes for the Young Chef of the Year included pans, knives and a month’s residency under the tutelage of Maître Rôtisseur Nils Henkel at the enchanting Schlosshotel Lerbach at Bergisch Gladbach, a two-star Michelin hotel and restaurant and one of the best luxury hotels in Germany. This wonderful learning experience was arranged by Michael Steinle, CEO BSH and was sponsored by Gaggenau.  Prior to the international competition in Berlin in early September both Red Carnation Hotels and Mosimanns offered training days in their kitchens to help Daniel hone his skills in the competition format.

Philip Evins added “I would especially like to congratulate Arnaud Bardary and Daniel Marshall, who were up against some very fierce and talented competitors.  It is always daunting to have to perform in a competitive environment but they both held their own and thoroughly deserve their winning positions”.

Amongst the rewards for Young Sommelier of the Year, Arnaud Bardary, is a trip to the Pernod Ricard vineyards in Spain arranged by Adrian Atkinson, Wine Development Director of Pernod Ricard UK. Again, to help prepare him for the inernational finals in Capetown he will have coaching days with three of our judges Gerard Basset, Nigel Wilkison and Dimitri Mesnard.

We wish them both the best of luck in their challenge for top international honours.

The evening concluded with our traditional Santé du Chef et du Service proposed by International Vice-President Marie Jones.

Caroline Hole-Jones
Chargée de Presse