Germany’s Christoph Eckert has been crowned the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs International Young Chef of the Year 2016, after the competition was hosted in the UK for the very first time, in what was its 40thanniversary year.
After winning the national title for Germany earlier this year, Christoph competed against leading young talent from 23 countries and in front of international judges, chaired by David Tetrault, Bailliage of Canada, and including internationally-recognised chefs.
Hosted at The Manchester College Fielden Campus, the International Young Chef Finals are open to chefs aged 27 years and under. Competitors in this year’s contest were presented with previously unidentified, identical ‘market baskets’ filled with a wide selection of ingredients, provided by Bidvest Foodservice and a number of its supplier partners.
With just 3.5 hours to prepare a three course menu, the competitors showcased an impressive level of skill under immense pressure. The standard at this year’s contest, according to Philip Evins, Bailli Délégué de Grande Bretagne and Membre Du Conseil Magistral, “was one of the highest yet, and the menus produced were a true testament to the contestants’ hard work and dedication.”
“Supporting young chefs and next generation talent remains a high priority for us. We’re immensely proud to have held this competition for 40 years and hosting this year’s International Finals in the UK for the first time was landmark event for the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs.”
Helping to facilitate the event was Bidvest Foodservice, along with some of its supplier partners, whose sponsorship of Chaîne des Rôtisseurs UK Young Chef Competition 2016 as well as the International Finals, helped make holding the competition in the UK a possibility. The commitment is part of the company’s aim to support the development of young and aspiring chefs in the UK. Andy Kemp, Bidvest Foodservice’s Group Sales and Marketing Director said:
“With skill shortages in hospitality at an all-time high, it has never been so important to encourage and support the development of young talent. Having witnessed first-hand the dedication and passion the Young Chef Competitors exhibit, we’re delighted to have joined forces with some of our key suppliers to support this initiative. The Chaîne des Rôtisseurs has a long-standing and successful approach to nurturing talent within the industry, which is why this partnership felt like such a natural step to take.”
Additional sponsors of the competition include industry partners, Le Cordon Bleu, Wüsthof, Bragard and Chef’s Hat Inc.
Maxine Gunning, head of department for service and retail industries at The Manchester College, said: “It has been an honour to host the competition here at The Manchester College. Supporting the talent and aspirations of young people comes naturally to us and we hope our international visitors have spent an enjoyable and enriching time here. Congratulations to Christoph, whose skill and hard work has been evident throughout the competition. This has been a valuable experience and one our own students have enjoyed being part of – helping support in the kitchen, prepping the secret ingredients for the ‘black boxes’ and working front of house.”
Chaîne des Rôtisseurs
The Chaîne des Rôtisseurs is an international gastronomic society. Founded in Paris in 1950, the society is dedicated to bringing together professional and non-professional members from around the world who appreciate wine cuisine and fine dining. Its long culinary history and tradition can be dated back to as far as 1248 and continues to be promoted today through its extensive local, national and international events. In an age of fast food culture, the Chaîne aims to sustain the appreciation of high quality food and drinks of all types and provide recognition for excellence.
The Young Chef Competition is just one of a calendar of world-renowned events hosted and promoted by the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs to encourage the aspirations of young professionals and provides a platform for them to compete with their peers. The Chaîne provides a network across over 80 countries where the spirit of camaraderie helps and welcomes travelling members. For further details please visit chaine.co.uk