Fuller’s announces Chef of the Year 2017

By Nikkie Sutton

- Last updated on GMT

Winning success: Johnny Joseph and Clayton Baker (l-r) won Fuller's Chef of the Year
Winning success: Johnny Joseph and Clayton Baker (l-r) won Fuller's Chef of the Year

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Fuller’s has revealed its Chef of the Year in both of its age categories, after months of rigorous judging.

Johnny Joseph, head chef at the Queen’s Head in Kingston, Surrey, was announced as the overall winner for the 25 and over category and Clayton Baker, head chef of the Links Tavern in Liphook, Hampshire, won the under-25s category with a two-course menu.

The chefs were crowned after a final cook-off at the Fuller’s Inns conference held at Laverstoke Park Farm near Overton in Hampshire.

Judges included Michelin-starred chef Pierre Koffmann, Fuller’s director Richard Fuller, last year’s Chef of the Year Gavin Sinden, the British Beer & Pub Association’s Josh Green and food critic David Williams.

Joseph and Baker went head to head against other Fuller’s chefs in both categories and were challenged with designing a menu using seasonal ingredients – asparagus, turbot and strawberries.

Winning components

Joseph’s winning menu included:

  • Asparagus, crispy hen’s egg: asparagus tips; purée and pickled shavings; and poached egg wrapped in potato string
  • Pan-fried turbot with clams: turbot on the bone; razor and parlourde clams; spinach; artichoke; and baby fennel
  • Strawberries and custard: compressed strawberries; strawberry gel; sorbet and tuille on set custard

Baker’s menu comprised:

  • Pan-roasted tranche of turbot; fennel croquettes; and Pernod velouté
  • White chocolate mousse; strawberries; pistachio; and basil

Both winners will fly to New York, where they will get the opportunity to work with top chefs.

Fuller’s director of food Paul Dickinson hailed Joseph and Baker as “worthy winners” and outlined how food drives the business.

Raising the profile

He added: “Competition was high and the judges were looking at the chefs’ skills and methodology in their cooking, but also at the balance of their menus, the presentation, the flavours and the execution of the ingredients.

“This competition raises the profile of food in Fuller’s. It is an important driver for our business around up-skilling our talent and it is brilliant that we can recognise the very best chefs in our team in order to secure long-term success.”

Meanwhile, the  Craft Guild of Chefs revealed the semi-finalists for its National Chef of the Year Awards.

They are:

  • Allister Barsby, executive chef, Grove of Narberth
  • Ian Boden, development chef, Flourish Food Solutions
  • Jack Bradley, head chef, Temple Sowerby House Hotel
  • Ben Champkin, sous chef, L'Enclume Restaurant
  • Jamie Coleman, head chef, Saunton Sands Hotel
  • James Cousins , Jnr sous chef, Restaurant Associates
  • Robert Cox, head chef, Tudor Farmhouse Hotel
  • David Davey-Smith, chef, Royal Air Force Worthy Down
  • Richard Davies, head chef, Epicure/Celtic Manor
  • Nathan Eades, head chef, Simpsons Restaurant
  • Glenn Evans, head of food development, Las Iguanas
  • John Grabecki, head chef, BNY Mellon
  • Dan Graham, head chef, Talbot Hotel Malton
  • Liam Grime, Corporal chef, captain of the Combined Services Culinary Arts Team RAF Odiham
  • Adam Handling, chef, Adam Handling Limited/The Frog Restaurant
  • Ollie Hay, head chef, Nomura
  • Jahdre Hayward, head chef, Haywards Restaurant
  • Will Holland, head chef, Coast Restaurant
  • Tom Lawson, chef-patron, Rafters Restaurant
  • Luciano Lucioli, head chef, Lusso - CH&Co
  • Cormac Mc Creary, sous chef, The Ritz London
  • Liam McKenna, sous chef, Trump International
  • Sarah-Jasmina Moussabih, head chef, 10 feet tall
  • Karl O`Dell, senior sous chef, Petrus – Gordon Ramsay
  • Jack O'Donovan, sous chef, Baxter Storey
  • Andonis Paraskevas, executive head chef, Lusso catering
  • Scott Perkins, restaurant operations chef trainer, University of West London/ Pillars Restaurant
  • Matthew Ramsdale, sous chef, The Chester Grosvenor
  • Luke Selby, head chef, Dabbous
  • Mathew Shropshall, chef lecturer, UCB – College of Food
  • Nick Smith, head chef, Harbour & Jones/Ashurst
  • David Stevens, conference and meeting sous chef, The Balmoral Hotel
  • Marcin Szelag, head chef, Rocksalt Folkestone
  • Robert Taylor, chef-patron, Compasses Inn
  • Adam Thomason, head chef, Restaurant Associates- Deloitte
  • Simon Webb, head chef, Restaurant Associates
  • Dean Westcar, head chef, Restaurant Hywel Jones by Lucknam Park
  • Thomas Westerland, sous chef, Lucknam Park
  • Aled Williams, head of development and innovation, TRUEfoods
  • Kuba Winkowski, head chef, The Feathered Nest Inn
  • Andy Wright, head chef, Mercedes F1 Headquarters

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