An 'immensely talented' South Cumbrian chef has been crowned the 2015 North West Young Chef of the Year.
Arthur Quin, chef de partie at The Punch Bowl Inn and Restaurant at Crosthwaite near Kendal scooped the award despite being the youngest finalist in the competition.
Arthur, 19, was described by judges as “immensely talented” with “fabulously turned out food.”
His menu of asparagus with poached egg and hollandaise sauce, Maryport line caught cod, cauliflower, wild garlic and Cockleaves Farm chicken, and soaked coffee sponge with pea, Armagnac and Lyth Valley honey saw off strong competition from five chefs from around the North West region.
He will now represent the North West region in the semi-finals of the 2015 National Young Chef of the Year Competition, which will be held in Sheffield on Thursday 11th June.
All five finalists had to create a 3-course menu using locally soured, seasonal produce and prepare and serve it to the judges in the cook off competition at Manchester College on Thursday 7th May.
Speaking after receiving his award, Arthur said: “I’m shocked, but obviously over the moon to win. I was nervous in the run-up but I just kept practicing over and over again and that helped me overcome the nerves.”
Arthur paid tribute to Punch Bowl Inn owner, Richard Rose as well as the rest of his team, with a special mention for Head Chef and 2012 North West Young Chef of the Year finalist, Scott Fairweather, whose mentoring has helped him achieve such high standards.
The esteemed judging panel was made up of Chairman, Brian Mellor, MD of Essential Cuisine, Nigel Crane, Vice Chairman of the British Culinary Federation, Matt Davies, Chef Proprieter of First Floor Café, Steven Doherty and Chef Patron of El Gato Negro, Simon Shaw.
Nigel Crane said: “Congratulations to Arthur – he was the busiest chef today, industrious; producing what I feel was the best cod dish of the entire series. His preparation, skilfully overseen by the Punch Bowl brigade, shows that practice really does make perfect – a great lesson to young chefs anywhere.”
Steven Doherty added: “He doesn’t realise how good he is. He is an immensely talented young chef.”
Essential Cuisine’s North West Young Chef of the Year Awards look for talented young chefs under 23 from Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Merseyside, Cheshire, Cumbria and Flintshire compete against each other in a two and a half hour cook off to produce a 3-course meal for two people featuring seasonal and local produce. For more information, visit www.essentialcuisine.com.
The other five finalists were Leo Deglane, 21 from Carden Park Hotel in Cheshire, Rachel Prendergrast, 20 from Abode Hotel, Manchester, Louise Williams, 20 from The Tavern in Mold, Daniel Heffy, 21 from The Art School in Liverpool, and Cameron Norris, 21 from Stanley House Hotel & Spa in Lancashire.