Leading culinary competition returns! 

Leading culinary competition returns! 

Entries are open for South West Chef of the Year 2022

A fantastic opportunity awaits the talented chefs and home cooks of the South West with the much-anticipated return of South West Chef of the Year.  After a two-year enforced break, due to the pandemic, the judges of this prestigious competition are once again searching for the finest culinary talent in the region.

Established 19 years ago, this competition recognises the skill and creativity of professional and amateur chefs, provides a launchpad from which its competitors can work towards achieving their ambitions and showcases the South West as a region of culinary excellence and bountiful produce.  Offering five entry categories, this is the only competition in the UK to present awards for professional chefs, young professional chefs, student/apprentice chefs, home cooks and junior chefs, providing an opportunity for everyone who loves to cook, and entries are open now, until 17th August.

Head judge and competition co-founder Michael Caines MBE, said, “South West Chef of the Year provides a platform for the region’s emerging chefs and aspiring home cooks of all ages. We invite anyone with a passion for cooking and creating wonderful dishes using quality produce from the region, to enter this competition offering an amazing opportunity to learn from highly acclaimed chefs, improve on culinary skills and be challenged at cooking to a high level.”

Michael is joined on the judging panel by many of the South West’s finest chefs, all keen to champion the talent and creative flair of competitors.

Recognising those chefs in the most senior positions in the kitchen, the Professional Chef award is open to chefs of any age working as sous chef/pastry chef or above whilst younger chefs have an opportunity to demonstrate their skills in the Young Professional Chef category, open to those aged 19-24 and working in any position up to junior sous chef.

Anyone just starting out in the industry and currently studying catering or on an apprenticeship (aged 16-19), is invited to enter the Student/Apprentice Chef award and, as an acknowledgement of the passion and skills of those who enjoy cooking at home, the Home Cook award is open to anyone aged 16 or above.

The Junior Chef award is for young cooks aged 11-16 and entries for this category have already closed for this year.  The second round of this competition has taken place and organisers are very excited to see the incredible degree of skill and ambition on display among the budding young chefs!

One winner from among the five category winners will then be awarded the illustrious title of Overall South West Chef of the Year.  Further awards are also available in acknowledgement of the Best Menu, Best Meat Dish, Best Fish Dish, Best Dessert, Best Presentation and the Best Showcase of Regional Ingredients.

Anyone wishing to enter simply needs to put together a menu and their recipes for a two-course meal incorporating the compulsory protein ingredients selected by the judges and submit these through the online entry form.  Full details about the competition and the nominated ingredients can be found at https://www.southwestchef.co.uk/the-competition/

The competition culminates in a prestigious awards presentation evening, open to all, where the winners will be announced following a unique and memorable dinner prepared by previous winners and judges of the competition.  This year, the dinner will be held on Tuesday 25th October at Exeter Golf and Country Club.