This month FSC worked with client Wing Yip to run its seventh Young Chef of the Year competition and a memorable one it was, writes Sheniz Onen.
As an agency, we run a selection of competitions for our clients from bartender engagement programmes to oyster shuck challenges. These events offer a wealth of benefits, providing a rich and memorable experience for competitors. Wing Yip Young Chef of the Year is no different and serves as a fantastic way to celebrate talent across the industry, build long-lasting connections and gain valuable experience.
The competition consistently attracts young talent from across the UK each year. Whether studying in a college or already working in the hospitality and catering sectors, the competition welcomes all young passionate chefs who share the same enthusiasm for producing top quality food.
This year’s competition, open to chefs aged 18 – 25, achieved a record number of applications. We whittled it down to just 15 finalists who all brought their A-game on the day. This made choosing a winner a particularly tough decision for our expert panel of judges, President of the British Culinary Federation, Peter Griffiths MBE, Michelin-starred chef, Glynn Purnell and chef-restaurateur, Larkin Cen.
Competitors were challenged to create and present a traditional street-food starter dish and a main course of their choice served in a bowl – encompassing authentic flavours and designed to encourage the budding chefs to experiment with Oriental ingredients. Wing Yip is passionate about young chefs being creative and championing Oriental flavours throughout their careers.
Amelia Ng, from Manor House Hotel based in Castle Combe came out on top and was crowned the winner of this year’s competition, wowing the judges with her homemade black sesame bao buns. The standard of food produced by all the finalists was incredible. Amelia has won a stage in the kitchen with Larkin Cen at his Bristol restaurant, Woky Ko.
The day concluded with an awards ceremony held at University College Birmingham, where catering students cooked up a spectacular three course meal for all the competitors, their guests and mentors to draw to a close the day.
As well as a flurry of social media activity documenting the day, coverage was achieved across both trade and regional publications championing the finalists from each of their hometowns and place of work or study, pre and post competition. A reach of 1,158,008 across print and online coverage was achieved, expected to grow further with post-competition interviews and profiling opportunities to take place. Overall it was a fantastic day from start to finish and we look forward to hosting another successful competition in 2020!