University College Birmingham win Nestlé Professional Toque d’Or 2016

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 24th June 2016

University College Birmingham take home the coveted Toque d’Or Trophy and £2500 worth of catering equipment for their college.

On Friday, June 25 2016, a panel of esteemed judges named University College Birmingham as the champions of this year’s Nestlé Professional Toque d’Or contest. The team of three front and back of house students were announced as the overall winners during the gala dinner held at the prestigious Dorchester Hotel in London, where Nestlé Professional Managing Director, George Vezza, described the finalist teams as “confident young competitors and our future leaders”. Along with the pride of winning the sought-after Toque d’Or Trophy they also go home with other cash prizes for their victory.

On winning, University College Birmingham student, Jack Gameson said: “It’s been a great experience, it feels good but unexpected. We have all worked together as a team including working with the other contestants from the other colleges.”

 

Megan Lyke, who made it through to the finals last year, said: “It’s very overwhelming, I’m speechless.”

University College Birmingham beat off stiff competition from five other colleges which according to Chairman of judges and TV chef, James Tanner hasn’t been that close for a couple of years.

Speaking to The Staff Canteen about why they chose University College Birmingham, James said: “What tipped it for them was that they weren’t afraid to stick their hands up and be the first to participate which really stood out for us.

“The competition was really close this year, the last time it was that close was about two years ago but they just edged it.”

Nestlé Professional Managing Director, George Vezza

During the ceremony George Vezza also surprised the room by announcing that Nestle Torque d’Or has launched another award in partnership with HIT and People 1st alongside chef Simon Hulstone. The Apprentice of the Year award aims to recognise the hard work and determination of the industry’s apprentices. The first recipient of the award was presented to Lukka Seddon from CH&Co. George then encouraged the room to put forward their apprentices for next year’s competition.

Spread out over four days, this year’s regional heats were set at different locations across London including Westminster Kingsway College, Bill’s restaurants and Hospitality House where the final six teams were asked to demonstrate their talent to the judges in a series of tasks. Based on the theme of nutrition, health and wellness each team were given the opportunity to work with renowned chefs that included the likes of James Tanner and Simon Hulstone.

Aside from the trophy the team from University College Birmingham also take away £2500 worth of catering equipment and £230 each plus a place on the acclaimed Toque d’Or study trip.

All six winning teams that made it through to the final automatically received £1000 for their college and all students that competed in the grand finals also received a £100 cash prize.

*Nestlé Professional Toque d’Or is an annual initiative to support young people into the hospitality industry and drive the development of skills within the sector through learning and training schemes that add genuine value to those participating. It is now in its 28th year and is the leading student catering competition of its kind, offering a balanced experience for all competitors across back and front of house.

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 24th June 2016

University College Birmingham win Nestlé Professional Toque d’Or 2016