The Chefs’ Forum Supports a Celebration of Student Achievement

Three students received the accolade of “Student of the Year” at The Institute of Hospitality – Southern Branch’s Student Awards Gala Evening at the exclusive Lainston House Hotel, near Winchester Tuesday (2) May.  Over ninety people attended the event, which was hosted by the celebrity chef, Steven Edwards, and featured the top college students from Dorset, Hampshire and Wiltshire who competed for prizes in the Chef, Pastry Chef and Front of House categories.

Winner ReeganThe Chefs’ Forum Award for Chef Student of the Year went to Reegan Graff from Kingston Maurward College.  The impressive trophy was designed and made by Clifton Food Range, the market-leading sous vide water bath supplier and presented by Catherine Farinha, Founder of The Chefs’ Forum.

Catherine said:

“The Chefs’ Forum wholeheartedly supports the IoH Awards.  It was so lovely to speak to all of the finalists and their proud families.  Whilst I was delighted to present the award to Reegan, I would like to congratulate all the young people participating in the competition and congratulate them on being nominated by their lecturers – A fantastic achievement and a great sign for the next generation of hospitality professionals”.

Winner JessicaThe Yate Supplies Pastry Chef Student of the Year was won by Jessica Edwards from Bournemouth & Poole College – Her grandad was delighted that she had been nominated, yet alone winning her category.

The AA Front of House Student of the Year was Carmen Darmanin from Eastleigh College, again a fantastic achievement and a milestone in her career as a hospitality professional.Carmen Winner

The evening included a sumptuous three course meal prepared by Head Chef Olly Rouse and his team at Lainston House, using meat provided by the Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB) and Walter Rose butchers, organic fruit and vegetables from Sunnyfields and wine from Nyetimber and Bancroft.   Further sponsorship was received from the Institute of Hospitality and Halton Foodservice.

Tom Goss, from the IoH Southern Branch said:

“The competition was very close; the judges had a very difficult time choosing the winners.  It was a spectacular evening – there was a real buzz going around the room the whole night; and when the winners were announced it was electrifying.  We are thrilled with the high level of support that we have received from the industry and the colleges”.

In addition to Kingston Maurward College, Dorchester, Bournemouth & Poole College and Eastleigh College, entrants came from Brockenhurst College, Highbury College, South Downs College and Basingstoke College of Technology.