Guns, Butchery and Sous-vide at Seasons Cookery School at Lainston House

Top chefs from across Hampshire were gunning for success at the latest meeting of The Chefs’ Forum.

Exclusive Chefs' Academy Students prepping canapesThe event, held on Monday November 9, at Lainston House near Winchester saw some of the county’s greatest culinary talents coming together with high-end suppliers and hospitality and catering students from The Exclusive Chefs’ Academy, HIT Training and Highbury College (Portsmouth) for an afternoon of networking, demonstrations, delicious food and even some clay pigeon shooting.

The event kicked off with a canapé and Nyetimber reception – the food prepared by Olly Rouse, Head Chef at Lainston House, with the help of the students.

Olly said: “All the students performed fantastically well and should be very proud of what they produced. It was great to have young people from so many different institutions joining our students at the Exclusive Chefs’ Academy to share what they have learnt.”

Olly demo dishOlly then created a fantastic pigeon dish with a masterclass in using a sous-vide water bath from Clifton Food Range.

Jack Cook from Walter Rose butchery demoThis was followed by Venison butchery by Jack Cook from top meat supplier Walter Rose before guests had the chance to tuck into Olly’s venison dish that was cooked at the same time.

Everyone then had a shot at winning a prize with a clay pigeon shooting session in the stunning grounds of Lainston House, organised by Taste of Game in conjunction with BASC.

Matt Budden Clay ShootingPrizes were awarded for the best and worst shot with Chef Consultant Andrej Prokes winning a copy of Venison: The Game Larder by Jose Souto.

Founder of The Chefs’ Forum Catherine Farinha said: “The Chefs’ Forum is all about making connections and sharing knowledge and this event really highlighted this. Not only did chefs have the chance to meet some fantastic suppliers, and students have the chance to work with a wonderful chef, but perhaps most importantly, students from many different learning centres had the chance to come together and share their knowledge with each other and network with employers.

Exclusive Chefs' Academy StudentsThese young people are the future of this industry and if today’s event is an indication of what is to come then I think we can all be confident that the industry has a very bright future.

“I would like to thank everyone for coming today and especially our sponsors without whom these events would not be possible.”

Photography by Andrew Plant: