Young Birmingham chefs put on silver service at World Cup

December 2014

The Birmingham-based England junior chef team is celebrating after scooping silver at the Culinary World Cup. 

The five-man brigade impressed judges at the competition, held in Luxembourg, with its hot kitchen menu and intricate cold buffet work. 

Junior Team England trained at University College Birmingham, it was dominated by UCB trainee chefs and the team was led during the event, staged during the Expogast show, by joint team manager and UCB chef lecturer Gary Goldsmith. 

The team went head to head with the top young talent from 57 other countries and maintained exacting standards amid the high pressure of an elite international competition cooking. 

The team was awarded a silver medal for its hot kitchen menu and a bronze for the cold buffet. For the hot kitchen, the chefs had to serve 70 paying customers, with no pre-preparation of food permitted. The buffet challenge required the chefs to make a show platter of three terrines, three garnishes, a woodland-style salad, a five-course gourmet menu, three hot starters and five desserts. 

After the points were tallied, England’s overall medal position was ranked as silver, making Junior Team England one of the second best teams in the world. 

The team featured youngest member Luke Dcaccia, 18, who is studying a VRQ Level 3 in advanced professional cookery at UCB. He cooked alongside UCB Culinary Arts Management student Tom Downes, 20, and Edward Marsh, 21, and Jack Gameson, 19, who both completed their VRQs in the summer. 

Edward is now a commis chef at Lucknam Park, Wiltshire, and Jack is a chef de partie at Warwick Castle. Craig Bateman, 22, a chef at The Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, was the fifth member of the team, which was assisted in the UK by joint team manager and UCB chef lecturer Mathew Shropshall.

Chef Goldsmith commended the performance of the team and said the experience would boost the young chefs’ career development.

He said: “I know the hard work demonstrated by these young chefs and the success they have achieved will stay with them throughout their careers, ensuring future employers understand their commitment to their chosen careers. They are the next generation of Great British chefs and will inspire others to succeed.”

The team was given special praise for its friendliness in helping others in the hot kitchen, its professionalism and team work.

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