Alex Angelogiannis wins National Chef of the Year 2023

The Staff Canteen

In the closest competition the Craft Guild of Chefs has ever seen, Alex Angelogiannis of The Glenturret Restaurant by Lalique has taken the title of National Chef of the Year.

Finalists showcased their skills in an intense cook-off at the University of West London under the eyes of some of the leading names in hospitality.

The impressive list of judges was a ‘Who’s Who’ in the culinary world including Kenny Atkinson, Matt Abe, James Petrie, Anna Haugh, Brett Graham, Tom Shepherd and Phil Howard.

To take the title, Alex served up a starter of Line caught mackerel, guts and all. His main course was a best end of Lumina lamb, rib, Coppa and offal dolma, followed by a dessert of Valrhona chocolate & beetroot, lovage and brambles.

Alex Angelogiannis

The runner-up spot was clinched by Matthew Smith from Inver Restaurant whilst Cleverson Cordeiro of Frog by Adam Handling finished in third. The much-anticipated results were announced this evening at a glittering awards ceremony at the iconic Hippodrome in Leicester Square.

After the challenging task of selecting the winner, Kenny Atkinson said: “I knew this was going to be an incredible final, but it’s exceeded all my expectations. Knowing how hard it was for us to select the finalists, picking a winner was never going to be an easy task and today all the chefs have cooked from their hearts and shown incredible skill. Winning meant so much to every single one of these chefs but Alex’s high scores from our judges put him in that much sought-after top spot. I’ll be following his journey over the next year and am confident he will be an incredible ambassador for the competition and wider industry.”

Whilst the title of National Chef of the Year is the prize that every chef is after, the competition is about so much more as the Craft Guild of Chefs aims to help develop and nurture the winner and provide culinary opportunities like no other.

Competition director and food innovation & sustainability director at Sodexo UK and Ireland, David Mulcahy added: “It might sound like a cliché, but this competition genuinely gets more and more impressive every year as we attract new culinary elite to enter. The brief set by Kenny Atkinson really got creative juices flowing for chefs and we’ve seen and tasted so many outstanding dishes today. Alex now joins that illustrious list of chefs and will be firmly embedded in hospitality history, following in the footsteps of former winners such as Gordan Ramsay, Simon Hulstone, Steve Groves and more recently Ben Murphy. The Craft Guild of Chefs will be supporting him over the next year as they celebrate this success.”

Watch Alex Angelogiannis' first interview after winning National Chef of the Year 2023!

Sam Dixon takes the top spot in Young National Chef of the Year

The Craft Guild of Chefs has discovered its next rising star of the culinary world as Sam Dixon, demi chef de partie, Northcote has been unveiled as the new Young National Chef of the Year.

Following in the footsteps of previous winners such as Mae Dionio, Luke Selby and Ben Champkin by gaining this prestigious title, Sam will also enjoy a host of incredible prizes.

This includes £3,000 from the Worshipful Company of Cooks to spend on culinary development; an educational culinary trip of a lifetime to Norway hosted by Seafood from Norway to celebrate responsibly sourced seafood; a product prize of £250 and a framed presentation plate from Churchill who will also be taking the winner on a gastronomic experience with previous winners; a magnum of the popular Champagne Collet and membership to the Craft Guild of Chefs.

Sodiaal is also offering the young chef winner a trip to visit one of their farms in the Clermont-Ferrand region of France including a paragliding experience to discover the stunning scenery.

He took the top spot after a hotly contested final at the University of West London this afternoon under close surveillance from the panel of judges.

The runner-up spot was claimed by Nathan Johnson, junior sous chef, Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa, with Jonny Smith, junior sous chef, Gravetye Manor finishing in third place.

The winning menu was a starter of Norwegian cod, chicken skin, pickled mushroom, hen of the woods, smoked bacon using Seafood from Norway cod.

Sam served up a main course of Aged Waterford Farm duck, glazed meatball, Ashcroft beetroot and for dessert a Manchester Tart.

Young National Chef of the Year is judged by some of the industry’s biggest names including Chair of judges, Lisa Goodwin-Allen, executive chef at Northcote. After the difficult task of selecting the winner, she said: “From judging the semi-finals, I knew today would be a hard task as all the chefs have risen to the challenge. All the judges agreed that Sam really deserved this win as he created three absolutely delicious plates of food. I’ve loved my two-year role as chair of judges for a competition I’m extremely passionate about. It’s so important for me to play a part in mentoring, inspiring and retaining these culinary stars in our industry.”

David Mulcahy, YNCOTY competition director and food innovation & sustainability director at Sodexo UK and Ireland added: “It’s important that the Craft Guild of Chefs invests in the young talent we have in our industry and this competition is so important for not only retaining but attracting talent. This is a competition that many chefs have their eye on from a young age and these rising stars get involved in other incredible industry competitions to have a shot at this title. You only need to look at the list of former winners to see what an incredible platform this competition provides. We are really looking forward to working with Sam over the next year and following his career which I’m sure is going to be full of success.”

The Young National Chef of the Year competition is supported by Churchill, HIT Training, Seafood from Norway and Sodiaal.

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 11th October 2023

Alex Angelogiannis wins National Chef of the Year 2023