Chefs in tough cook-off to win top prize

TV chef Sophie Grigson and Ian James, of British Pepper & Spice, judge Spice Chef of the Year at the Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards

TV chef Sophie Grigson and Ian James, of British Pepper & Spice, judge Spice Chef of the Year at the Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards

0
Have your say

Chefs both experienced and young have been battling it out in the kitchen.

Some of the county’s finest chefs have been taking part in a competition to win one of three prestigious titles in this year’s Carlsberg UK Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards.

The competition, devised by Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership (NEP), is in its fourth year and celebrates local produce and drink, as well as recognising excellence within the county’s dining venues and rewarding those who work so hard within the culinary sector.

Jon Burns, of the Tollemache Arms in Harrington, and Liam Goodwill, a chef at Rushton Hall, were two of the four chefs competing to become Booker Chef of the Year. The others were Oli Butel, of Frank’s Steakhouse in Northampton, and James Ingram, of the works restaurant at Mercedes Benz AMG in Brixworth.

The chefs were set a Ready Steady Cook style challenge, each being provided with a selection of store cupboard products provided by category sponsor Booker as well as their key Northamptonshire ingredients of pork from Arnold Farming, Gayton and raspberries and redcurrants from Wakefield Pick Your Own near Towcester.

Steven Saunders, a Fellow Master Chef of Great Britain, and one of the judges, said: “The standard of the chefs, their skills and their creative abilities really stood out and it’s all the more impressive when you think that they were being watched and scrutinized with every flick of a knife or turn of a wooden spoon. It was an outstanding competition and really shows the talent that Northamptonshire has to offer.”

There was also a cook-off to find the Spice Chef of the Year and the Young Chef of the Year – a category for those aged 18-25.

The winners will be announced at the awards dinner at The Wing, Silverstone, on November 14. Tickets priced at £80 (plus VAT) are available by calling Rachel Mallows on 01933 664437 or emailing rachel@rachelmallows.com

There is also an opportunity to sample the finalists in the Artisan Local Product/Drink of the Year category by visiting the Northamptonshire Food Show @ Holdenby which is taking place on August 26-27 at Holdenby House. For details visit www.letyourselfgrow.com/foodanddrinkawards