City of Bristol College’s catering and hospitality students have received some tasty feedback from TV and Michelin-starred chefs over the past week.

Under the guidance of Adrian Kirikmaa, kitchen and restaurant manager at the College, learners served up a whole host of dishes during the Bristol Food Connections and Eat Drink Bristol Fashion events.

COB College 2 for siteAt the BBC’s Food and Farming Awards, coinciding with the launch of Bristol Food Connections, students got up close and personal with TV chefs Tom Kerridge and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingtsall.

And Dan Saladino of Radio 4’s The Food Programme, organisers of the awards, said: “The students were inspirational. The food was delicious and helped tell the story of the awards and everyone involved was warm, welcoming and ultra-professional.

“Before he had to rush off, in fact, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall said he refused to move from the backstage area because he wanted more of the devilled kidneys.”

Students were also busy cooking up and serving other plates at a City Restaurant open evening at their own College Green centre, a pop-up lunch at Queen Square, the Sustainable Food Summit and the closing Bristol Food Connections event, a Fair Trade Gala Dinner at the Harbourside on Saturday.

COB College 3 for siteThere they worked with Michelin star chef Peter Sanchez-Iglesias of Casamia, and they also received high praise from fellow Michelin star chef Josh Eggleton of the Pony & Trap, and co-organiser of Eat Drink Bristol Fashion.

Said Mr Kirikmaa: “The students have been a real credit to the college. It’s been an industry-authentic experience for them, it’s been very busy and pressured at times, and they all coped really well.

“To hear the sort of feedback we’ve had is really encouraging and should give the students real incentive to go on in the industry and keep improving.”

Mr Kirikmaa will now turn his attentions towards helping to raise money for survivors of the Nepalese earthquake on Sunday.

Top chefs from around the South West will serve up a five-course fundraising dinner for Action Against Hunger at The Kitchen in Bristol, with Mr Kirikmaa and Chris Wicks of the Old Down Manor preparing a veal and kidney main course

COB College 4 for siteThe event is the brainchild of Thornbury-based chef Romy Gill, and also helping the cause will be Bristol-based Dean Edwards, resident chef for TV shows This Morning and Lorraine, Russell Brown, of Dorchester’s Michelin Star Sienna Restaurant, Sam Moody, the owner of The Bath Priory, Brett Sutton, of The White Post in Dorset, Mat Follas, a Masterchef winner, and Daniella Coombs, of the Bishopston Supper Club.

Another culinary fundraiser will be staged at the College’s South Bristol Skills Academy on 4 June.

Featuring chefs including Eggleton, Toby Gritten, chef proprietor of the Pump House, Lido head chef Freddy Bird, and Louise McCrimmon, head chef at Bristol’s Harvey Nichols, the sell-out Great Bristol Menu event is being held in aid of the Bristol Drugs Project, with College learners prepping and serving up dishes, and Floristry students also arranging table displays for the occasion.