Finalists for The Chefs’ Forum, Young Pastry Chef of the Year Announced

17:00 on Friday 28th May saw the close of the semi-final for The Chefs’ Forum, Young Pastry Chef of the Year, 2021. Over the Spring bank-holiday weekend, our panel of expert judges marked the entries from twenty semi-finalists, competing from colleges across the UK.

The challenge required the students to produce a chocolate-inspired entremet consisting of at least four layers, using a chosen chocolate from a range of five, carefully selected and supplied by sponsors Valrhona.

The standard of the entries was impressive and the creativity shown by the students was amazing. The consideration of textures and flavours showed great imagination and careful thought in terms of the eating experience.

Chair of judges, Jamie Houghton of Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and President of the UK Pastry Team said:

“Having looked at all the candidates’ work thoroughly; I was very impressed by the standard of entries. The students have worked hard and it will make for a very interesting final. I’m looking forward to being able to see everyone’s work and tasting their creations at the final.”

Neil Rippington, Director of Education at The Chefs’ Forum said:

“Supporting Jamie and the team of judges over the weekend was a pleasure. I was enthused by the number and standard of entries; it shows what great talent we have in colleges throughout the UK. We want the competition to celebrate this and showcase the career potential in such a creative and rewarding profession.”

After great deliberation and debate, the final eight students were selected to progress to the final, held at West London College on June 15th.

Congratulations to the finalists:

The judges were thrilled and inspired by the enthusiasm and dedication shown by the students. The judges commented on how difficult it was to select eight to go through from so many high-quality entries, but this is the nature of competition.

Great thanks and appreciation go out to the judges for their contributions to date and for confirmation of their presence at the final on June 15th. At the final, the students will be working under time constraints and the judges will taste the finished products, as well as analysing the skills and techniques used.

The Judges

Catherine Farinha, Director and Founder of The Chefs’ Forum said:

“I am really pleased that the competition has been taken so seriously by the students and the colleges. The take-up was beyond expectation and the quality of the students’ work was outstanding and extremely well thought through. I can’t wait to sample the entremets in person at the final.”

The competition is kindly sponsored and supported by Valrhona, Matfer Bourgeat, Mitchell & Cooper, Oliver Harvey, Angel Refrigeration, Welsh Fine Food Cluster (Calon Wen Dairy), First Choice Produce and Vanillaism.