The Scottish Chefs Conference, Demonstrator chefs - April Partridge

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 26th October 2015
In anticipation for this year's special 10 year anniversary of the Scottish Chefs Conference, we are catching up with a few of the demonstrator chefs. Yesterday we talked to Clare Smyth. Today we are asking April Partridge why she wanted to be involved this year.  photo 2 Young chef, April Partridge, began her career at the age of 16. After competing in the Rotary Young Chef competition, she embarked on a journey with The Ivy restaurant, working around different stations of the kitchen under mentor Gary Lee. It was here that she started taking part in food demonstrations, and was given the opportunity to cook for Sir Terry Wogan during BBC Children in Need.

>>> Read: The Private Room at The Ivy re-opens after refurbishment 

After graduating from Westminster Kingsway College, April went on to win a vast array of awards. In 2012, she won the Hotelympia's Hot Talent Award, the "Craft Guild of Chefs Young Chef Award" in 2013 and "The Observer Food Monthly Young Chef of the Year" in 2014. What does it mean to you to be at the 10th anniversary of the Scottish Chefs Conference? It is an absolute honour to be at this years Scottish chefs conference, especially on the 10 year anniversary. It was incredibly humbling to be asked along with the likes of Clare, Anglea, Jockey and Andrew. I hope that I can inspire the younger audience a little like how these chefs have inspired me.

>> Read: Our interview with demonstrator chef Clare Smyth

Do you know what you will be cooking yet? I'm still not 100% sure what I will be cooking yet. There are a few dishes that are close to my heart that I'm thinking about... I may do one of the first dishes I got on the menu where I worked. It was a proud moment for me as I created the dish and the recipes myself and it sold well on the menu. It's a Venison Dish with Roasted Jerusalem Artichokes, Bitter Chocolate, Pear and Port Purée, Girolles and an Anise and Port Jus.photo 2 Why did you want to take part this year?  I just think it's crazy that I am going to be doing demos with these nine unbelievably talented and influential people in our trade... And although I won't be at their standard when I'm cooking my food I hope that the students can relate to me. I just want to be able to pass on the things I have learnt so far to them and try and give them some valuable advise for one young chef to another. Has anything ever gone wrong when you have done a live show or demo? I absolutely love doing demos and I've been lucky to do quite a few so far in my career at places like foodies festival and taste festival. But the first demo I ever did at the age of 16/17 with my first head chef and mentor Gary Lee was a memorable one for sure. It was in south bank, and I was really nervous. We turned up and it was chucking it down with rain so there was hardly anyone there. When I got on stage there were about 6 people in the audience. Not quite what we had hoped for but looking back it's very funny! By Katie Pathiaki

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 26th October 2015

The Scottish Chefs Conference, Demonstrator chefs - April Partridge