The Craft Guild of Chefs celebrated its 30th Craft Guild Chefs awards at a glittering dinner held on Monday 24th June at the JW Marriott Grosvenor House in London and was attended by more than 800 of hospitality’s leading lights, and the Craft Guild of Chefs’ royal patron, HRH The Duchess of Edinburgh.

Now in its 30th year, the Craft Guild of Chefs Awards celebrates culinary excellence, for which 19 awards were presented on the night. It is only the second time in the awards history that an International Chef Award has been awarded. The first was to Alain Ducasse in 2018, and the second in 2024 to American Chef Thomas Keller.

Keller has established several restaurants including The French Laundry in Napa Valley, and Per Se in New York. He is the first and only American-born chef to hold multiple three-star ratings from the Michelin Guide.

On the award win he said, “It recognises the work that you are doing, and encourages you to the work in the future and do even better.”

He continues, “Thank you, I am grateful, and honoured, and proud to receive this award from a group of professionals in another country, that in itself makes me giddy! But we also have to remember all the awards we receive are for what we did yesterday, and I appreciate that and it’s so encouraging, and reinforcing the work that we are doing, but we also have to consider what we are doing tomorrow.”

“Every single award defines another level of responsibility I have. People are looking at me after receiving this award as a true leader, and I love that. To be a leader is different to being a chef, and I accept that burden of responsibility wholeheartedly, and I will make sure what I do in the future will represent this award.”

Steve Munkley, Vice President Craft Guild of Chefs comments, “Thomas Keller is a true inspiration and we were delighted to recognise his work by awarding him the International Chef Award. The chefs here tonight, from apprentices, to college lecturers, and all the way through to fine dining have all achieved so much.”

The Special Award – Asma Khan

The Special Award was presented to Asma Khan, one of the UK’s and India’s brightest culinary stars and owner of the Darjeeling Express restaurant. Previous winners of this award include Simon Rogan, Angela Hartnett MBE, Michel Roux OBE & Albert Roux OBE, Marco Pierre White and Raymond Blanc OBE to name a few.

Asma comments. “I feel very humbled, but I understand one thing, this is significant! For all the generations who come after this, generations of girls will know there is a space in hospitality for them, and that is this is an industry which will embrace you. It doesn’t matter what colour skin you are, or what age you are.”

Restaurant Chef Award – Tom Tsappis

Other notable awards went to Tom Tsappis, Chef Owner of Killiecrankie House who won Restaurant Chef Award. Of the win he said, “I was chuffed, I didn’t expect it, I don’t even know who nominated me. When my name was called out I didn’t hear the clapping, I was shaking. I wasn’t anticipating this win! The other guys I was up against are top chefs with reputations which exceed my own. I think winning an award which is judged by other chefs makes you feel part of something larger, and its nice to be recognised by people who you also know are good at what they do.”

Michael Kwan, Executive Head Pastry Chef at The Dorchester won the Pastry Chef Award, and New Restaurant of the Year Award went to Miller Prada, for Humo London.