Martin Carabott wins the British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year 2016

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 12th April 2016

Martin Carabott has been crowned 2016 British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year at an industry Awards Dinner held at University College Birmingham on Monday, 11 April.

martin1As the 15th winner of the competition, Martin joins an elite group of past winners and Michelin starred chefs which includes Simon Hulstone, Luke Tipping, Richard Turner and Adam Bennett.

On winning the competition Martin said: "Winning felt really good as I have worked very hard to be at my best on the final and it worked! I celebrated by stopping for a krispy crème in the services on the way to London! I was quite tired after the wonderful dinner we had at UCB but I have a picnic with the missus planned for Sunday to celebrate and relax.

"On the day the competition was tough as I was competing alongside some fantastic chefs and was very nervous to be judged by such established chefs as everyone's taste, likes and dislikes are different. Birmingham college made everything a bit easier for us though, the kitchen was amazing and people there where very helpful so everything sort of fell into place as I started cooking." Martin, from the RAC Club, London, impressed the celebrity line-up of judges with his culinary talents. His winning menu consisted of Dashi Risotto, Shellfish, Crispy Rice and Shiso, followed by Grilled Picanha of Aubrey Allen’s 21-day Dry Aged Beef, Green Peppercorn, Sweet Potato, Garlic and Purple Broccoli and Iced Jersey Cream with Orange Blossom, Blood Orange Meringue.

Judges included  Ashley Palmer-Watts, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal; Roger Narbett MCA, Chairman of Judges; Sat Bains, Restaurant Sat Bains; Brian Turner CBE; Benoit Blin, Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons; Anthony Keravec, Les Toques Blanches Lyonnaises and Adam Handling, previous Chef of the Year winner.

Martin was one of ten leading chefs to reach the live final cook off, which was compèred and

Ashley Palmer Watts
Ashley Palmer-Watts

judged under the watchful eye of TV celebrity chef, Brian Turner CBE. Following the semi-final in February, the winning finalists had to attend a Butchery Masterclass at Aubrey Allen in Coventry.

The showcase experience enabled the chefs to enhance their butchery skills and learn more about preparing inspiring and innovative cuts of meat in preparation of the final. Competition organiser and BCF President Peter Griffiths said: “With the opportunity to join the National Team squad as well as flying the flag for British produce at the NRA in Chicago, this competition continues to attract some of the industry’s best.  The standards we have seen this year have been a credit to all concerned.”

All ten chefs were tasked with producing a three course meal for two covers which centred on using a Dry Aged Rump of Beef from the Butchery Masterclass.

>>> Read: Meet the British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year finalists 2016


Runner-up was Jamie Park, Adam Handling at Caxton, London and third was Andy Wright, Restaurant 23, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire. Sponsored by Aubrey Allen, the Chef’s Butcher, AHDB and Grant Sous Vide, Martin received the award from Russell Allen of Aubrey Allen and Roy Homent of Grant Sous Vide, together with a cheque for £2,500, the opportunity to join the squad of the English National Culinary Team in Erfurt, Germany this October at the Culinary Olympics, an all-expenses-paid trip to the Restaurant Show in Chicago to promote the Best of British from Grant Sous Vide along with a SV200 Stirring Unit.

Martin started cooking professionally in 2006 working in a four star hotel in his hometown of Malta while studying at the Institute of Tourism.

starterComing to Britain for the first time during his studies to work at Gleneagles Hotel, Martin was welcomed back after his graduation, winning the Skills for Chefs competition in 2010.

His first taste of London came soon afterwards when he moved to Apsley’s, where he worked his way up to become a chef de partie in the kitchen of Michelin-starred chef Heinz Beck. Martin has been at the Royal Automobile Club’s Great Gallery since November 2012, originally as a chef de partie before moving up to junior sous chef and then sous chef in 2014, a position he currently holds.

While at the club Martin has spent a week staging at Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saison and has been encouraged to enter a number of competitions such as last year’s National Chef of the Year where he came in third place and the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Annual Awards of Excellence in 2014.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 12th April 2016

Martin Carabott wins the British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year 2016