Talented young Welsh chefs, who covered themselves in glory by winning two silver medals at the Culinary Olympics in Germany last October, have been chosen to represent Wales in a major competition on home soil next week.
The Culinary Association of Wales’ (CAW’s) junior team will take on teams from Italy and Austria in the Battle for the Dragon contest at the Welsh International Culinary Championships (WICC) at Coleg Llandrillo, Rhos-on-Sea from Tuesday to Thursday next week.
The Welsh team, which has risen to eighth in the world rankings after their performance in the Culinary Olympics, go into the kitchen on Tuesday and will cook 90 covers. The menu will be very like the one the chefs cooked at the Olympics, with a few tweaks made following comments by the judges.
Austria follows Wales into the kitchen on Wednesday and Italy complete the contest on Thursday. Each team must cook a three-course meal for 90 dinner under the supervision of a panel of international judges, who will announce the winners at the WICC Awards dinner at Llandudno Bay Hotel on Thursday night.
Tickets for each Battle for the Dragon lunch cost £26 or £23 each when booking all three. The Welsh lunch is sold out and there is only limited availability of tickets for the other two days. Contact Vicky Watkins, Culinary Association of Wales, on Tel: 01938 555893 email: Office@welshculinaryassociation.com
The Wales team is coached by Michael Evans, a lecturer at Grŵp Llandrillo Menai, Rhos on Sea and captained by Jack Davison, head chef at Deganwy Quay Hotel and Spa, Deganwy, Conwy. Team members are Ffion Lewis, Nag’s Head, Garthmyl, Joey Jones, head chef Cores Howell. Wrexham, Steffan Davies, Gidleigh Park, Exeter, Harry Paynter-Roberts, Castle Hotel, Conwy and Arron Tye, Shared Olive, Hawarden.
The final sees Wales senior team colleagues Simon Crockford from the Celtic Manor Resort, Newport and Jason Hughes from Chateau Rhianfa, Menai Bridge compete against Matthew Smith Chef Consultant, Thomas Westerland from Lucknam Park Hotel and Spa, near Bath, a beaten finalist last year, Matthew Ramsdale from The Chester Grosvenor and Anthony Bush from Heronston Hotel, Bridgend.
The winner will secure an all expenses paid, one week culinary trip to the Netherlands courtesy of Koppertcress, which includes an ‘inspirational day’ with a cress coach, a set of knives courtesy of Dick Knives, £250 worth of products from Churchill China and Gourmet Classic shopping vouchers. The winner will also be encouraged to represent Wales in the UK National Chef of the Year contest.
The growing popularity of baking, sugarcraft and cake decorating will be reflected in the Cake Cymru 2017 show, which will run throughout the WICC.