The Search for the UK’s Top Young Chef Talent is on!

The Search for the UK’s Top Young Chef Talent Young National Chef of the Year surpasses all other young chef contests, bringing together those identified as the best young chefs in the industry and giving them a platform on which to build their future careers. Winning YNCOTY firmly establishes a chef as a rising star of the culinary world both in the UK and beyond. Being crowned as Young National Chef of the Year is a highly sought after prize, but as well as going home with this prestigious accolade, the winner will also receive some incredible stagiaires and PR opportunities that will truly raise their profile in the industry.

What's happening this year?

For 2023, Candidates are required to create a starter dish using fresh Norwegian cod that is suitably garnished and served. Lisa wants to see a delicious dish focusing on how the cod is prepared and cooked to perfection. This could be pan fried, steamed or baked and must be accompanied with a seasonal garnish. Successful finalists will be required to fillet a whole cod at the beginning of the final cook-off as part of a skills test.

For the main course, chefs need to create a dish using whole fresh duck using two different cuts. The chefs are advised to pay real care and attention to the way the duck is cooked and demonstrate how to prepare it, while minimising waste from both the duck and the other ingredients they use. Competitors must include details of where the duck has come from in their entry to demonstrate consideration for provenance, sustainability and sourcing.

Finally, the chefs are required to create their own interpretation of the regional classic Manchester Tart for dessert. Lisa Goodwin-Allen is encouraging chefs to think ‘out of the box’ with a fresh approach to create a well-balanced, delicious, and pleasing finale to their menu. Entries from invited young chefs will be reviewed by the judging team to determine six candidates to join the four seeded finalists from The Graduate Awards, Royal Academy of Culinary Arts Annual Awards for Excellence, British Culinary Federation Chef of the Year and World Skills.

Chefs invited to take part in this year’s semi-final are:
  • Benjamin Mabley, senior chef de partie, Hartwell House Hotel & Spa
  • Cliodhna Reid, commis chef, Gleneagles Hotel
  • Elliot Wakefield, junior sous chef, Dorian, Notting Hill
  • George Baldwin-Edie, development chef
  • Harry Donnelly, chef de partie, The RAF Club
  • Imogen Parrish, head chef, The Running Horses, Mickleham 
  • Jack Edgar, Atlantic Hotel, Jersey
  • Jack Postles, Junior Sous Chef, The Art School Restaurant
  • Joshua Singer, senior chef de partie, Scott's, Richmond
  • Maciej Pisarek, demi chef de partie, The Savoy
  • Miltan Masha, senior sous chef, Monarch Theatre
  • Morgan Stephens, demi chef de Partie, L'Enclume
  • Nathan Johnson, junior sous chef, Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa, Bath
  • Nicole Watt, ABCS, Royal Navy, HMS Defender
  • Richard Postles, Junior Sous Chef, The Art School Restaurant
  • Rick Owens, sous chef, Tottenham Hotspur Stadium
  • Sam Dixon, demi chef de partie, Northcote
  • Stephanie Belcher, junior sous chef, Coast Restaurant, Saundersfoot
  • Subhan Malik, junior sous chef, The Beaumont Hotel

Look out for the big reveal of the ten finalists on Friday 28th July 2023.

Hear what our winners had to say...

YNCOTY Title Holders

  • 2023 Mae Dionio
  • 2022 Daniel Cornish
  • 2021 Edwin Kuk
  • 2020 William Keeble
  • 2019 Henry Wadsworth
  • 2018 Danny Young
  • 2017 Ruth Hansom
  • 2013 Ben Champkin
  • 2012 Charles Smith
  • 2016 Danny Hoang
  • 2014 Luke Selby