The Chefs’ Forum 10th Anniversary Reached New Heights in Birmingham

100 guests enjoyed 6 courses of exquisite food in the ‘Grandest Ballroom’ in Birmingham to celebrate 10 years of The Chefs’ Forum on Monday. Students from University College Birmingham (UCB) teamed up with top local chefs to produce a meal to remember.

Fittingly, in a city renowned for its culinary diversity, there was a strong Asian element to the lunch with Munayam Khan of Raja Monkey cooking the fish course of Meen Moilee. However, the splendour of the occasion was undeniable in the restored glory of the Grand Ballroom of The Grand Hotel Birmingham. A Champagne reception sponsored by Swallow Drinks beforehand allowed guests to mingle and meet suppliers.

Suppliers exhibiting in a mini trade show included Chef Works, Adande, Taylor UK, Total Produce, Wedgwood and Foie Royale.

Adam Bateman, Culinary Director at The Grand Hotel Birmingham said

“It was brilliant to welcome the five guest chefs into my kitchen to cook a fantastic six course menu for my industry peers.  The students from UCB were great to work with and really impressed us with their attitude to work and ability.  Our stars of the day were Keaton Butler for Front of House and Elliott Mason in the kitchen – Both will be receiving a voucher for afternoon tea for two in recognition of their stellar performance.

It is so important that we nurture and encourage the next generation of hospitality professionals and yesterday’s 10th Anniversary Lunch for The Chefs’ Forum did just that.  I would like to take this opportunity to say a massive thank you to all the chefs who took part and all Birmingham hospitality professionals who attended.”

“We’re hitting our stride now,” said Catherine Farinha, Director of The Chefs’ Forum. “Yesterday was a fantastic event. We’ve always enjoyed coming to Birmingham. There’s such a special level of talent here and it’s not always celebrated as it ought to be. But, to celebrate in the Ballroom of The Grand Hotel with great chefs and the talented students at UCB really demonstrated what a national enterprise The Chefs’ Forum is now.

“We were delighted to welcome so many old friends and new ones, too – including the winner of MasterChef: The Professionals in 2021, Dan Lee.”

Kali Davidson, Head of Hospitality and Catering at UCB was a guest of honour and spoke about how much the college is looking to build new links with employers in the area to give their students the boost they need. We’re right there with them to help them achieve that.

“We were able to show chefs and suppliers early proofs of our new book, The Chefs’ Knowledge on the day and the feedback from our new publishing division grows and grows” Catherine continued.

“2023 will be another year of special lunches nationwide as we embark on a tour of the country to celebrate the launch of the book – which, at its heart, is all about empowering young chefs with the information, advice and recipes they need to help them get started.”

Here’s what the guests enjoyed:

Drinks Reception Sponsored by Swallow Drinks & Foie Royale Canapés by Dan Moon
Amuse Bouche – Angelina Adamo (Tutto Apposto)
Pumpkin Broth – Orzo, Pickled Pumpkin, Sage Oil & Almond
Starter – Louisa Ellis (MasterChef: The Professionals)
Celeriac, Tru­e & Lovage
Fish Course – Munayam Khan (Raja Monkey)
Meen Moilee & Lemon Rice
Main Course – Adam Bateman (The Grand Hotel Birmingham)
Roast Cotswold White Chicken, Its Own Sausage & Wild Mushroom
Pre-dessert – Roger Lomas (The Grand Hotel Birmingham)
Compressed Fig, Blackberry Gel & Tonka Bean Namalaka
Dessert – Tom Everard-Fairburn (Two Brothers Bakery)
Roasted Pineapple, Passion Fruit Curd, Salted Popcorn & Soy

Photo credit: