Harry Guy, support and development chef for the Eden Hotel Collection in Stratford-Upon-Avon, Warwickshire, has won the 2016 Roux Scholarship. Guy beat five other finalists in a highly contested final held at Westminster Kingsway College, London, on Monday 4th April, where they were asked to prepare and serve Norfolk black chicken cooked en croûte, cardoon gratin and tarragon sauce.
The 26-year-old chef, who made it through to the regional finals last year, was battling it out against Martin Carabott of the Royal Automobile Club, London, Ben Champkin from L'Enclume, Cartmel, Cumbria, Scott Dineen of Goldman Sachs (BaxterStorey), London, Paul Matthews from Fieldfisher (Vacherin), London, and Tim Peirson of Kensington Place, Kensington, London.
Commenting on the 33rd national final, Michel Roux Jr said: “At first sight it could seem like this was a straightforward and simple dish. However there were a lot of potential banana skins and Harry’s dish showed exceptional all round skills."
Alain Roux added: “Although it may sound simple we chose this dish because it’s technically challenging due to all the component parts. We were looking for suet dough with the perfect bite, chicken with maximum flavour, two well made sauces and correctly prepared soft cardoons. Once assembled the test was to cook the dish properly, without it becoming dry. It’s a pie – nothing more and a chef cooking in the UK should know how to cook a pie!”
Pierre Gagnare: “The winner was obviously stressed but in a positive way and he channelled this into his cooking. He had the intelligence to perfectly combine and balance all the elements of his dish. His semi-final dishes also stood out so this made it three out of three for Harry. He will make an excellent Roux Scholar.”
Harry Guy said: “I was apprehensive at the start but figured it out ok. I was hoping for meat so that was good and I was happy with what I produced. It means everything to win! To be in close contact with the Roux family is invaluable and will really push my career forward as it establishes you in the industry.”
The six chefs, all under 30 years old had three hours to cook the Escoffier inspired recipe in front of the judges. Pierre Gagnaire, the legendary three star Michelin chef led the judging in a new role as Honorary President of the Judges 2016. First time chairmen of the judges Alain and Michel Jr, were also joined by James Martin, Brian Turner, the first scholar Andrew Fairlie as well as previous winners Simon Hulstone (2003 scholar) and André Garrett (2002 scholar).
The winner was announced at a glittering awards ceremony at The Mandarin Oriental Hotel, in front of an audience of prestigious guests, top chefs and leading figures from the world of hospitality. For the first time in the history of the competition the awards ceremony was live streamed via the Roux Scholarship website.
The Eden Hotel Collection chef, who previously worked at L’Enclume, receives £6,000, and an invitation to cook and train under the supervision of a leading chef at a prestigious three star Michelin restaurant anywhere in the world for up to three months.
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