Young Chefs Competition 2022

Rising stars of the hospitality world were unveiled this week at the Chaîne des Rotisseurs GB Young Professional Awards, held at the newly opened Harrods Social by Jason Atherton. Over 60 guests joined the three chef and three sommelier finalists for a faultless and signature lunch to celebrate their achievements.

Liam Rogers, 25, of Gleneagles in Scotland - and a former MasterChef; The Professionals finalist – was crowned Young Chef of the Year, and goes forward to compete in the World Championships in Mexico at the beginning of October.

It just goes to show what superb young talent we have in the industry now, and we are proud to be nurturing these embryonic and promising careers’ explains Phillip Evins, Bailli Délégué for the Chaîne des Rôtisseurs GB. ‘The Chaine congratulates these worthy winners, and wishes them every success in the future, We will certainly see more of them, I am sure.

Warrington-born Liam beat two young chefs from Grantley Hall in North Yorkshire - runner up Daniel Parker and highly commended Thomas Wyper. Cooking in the Knorr kitchens in Leatherhead, all the chef finalists were asked to create and execute a three-course meal for four in three hours, from a ‘surprise’ box of ingredients. Liam’s winning menu, centred around lemon sole with brown shrimp butter; poached ballotine of chicken with chorizo and a rhubarb dessert with crème fraiche, tarragon and a sable biscuit.

Liam Rogers’ winning menu

  • Starter: Lemon sole with parsley emulsion, poached artichoke and brown butter with shrimps
  • Main: Poached ballotine of chicken with chicken mousse, chorizo and sweetcorn fricassee, chorizo jam, wilted spinach and crispy chicken skin
  • Dessert: Poached rhubarb, rhubarb puree, whipped crème fraiche with tarragon and a sable biscuit

A mystery box is always tough, but I think my experience on Master Chef certainly taught me to hold my nerve, and keep cool under pressure’ he commented. ‘I was definitely focussed.’ That focus has been there all his life. ‘I’ve always wanted to be a chef, right from an early age. There was no doubt about it’, he explains. Liam’s father owned a restaurant in Warrington, and young Liam helped out in the kitchens from the age of 12. ‘It was the only way I got to see my Dad, apart from Sundays’ he laughs, ‘but that got me hooked.’ After catering college, Liam spent some time at Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles, and then moved to Sat Bains in Nottingham. It was there that he was encouraged to enter Master Chef. ‘I got to the last three in the Finals – it was amazing. I was only 24, and the youngest chef in the competition from the quarter finals onwards.

Late last year, Liam returned to Gleneagles, this time as sous chef in the Strathearn restaurant. When he heard about the Chaine’s competition and the chance to go to Mexico, he signed up immediately. ‘I am so excited. It’s a place I have always wanted to visit, Now, after three competitions, I have finally come back with a W for Win! My Dad was the first person I texted with the news.

Now the Young Chef of the Year starts his preparations for the Chaîne’s International Finals this autumn, ably coached by his mentor and judges.

Philip Evins rounded off the proceedings at Harrods by thanking all the sponsors of the Young Professional Awards. ‘We are extremely grateful to Bidfoods for the comprehensive mystery boxes, Wright Bros for the seafood, Bragard for the embroidered chefs’ jackets, Zweisel glass, Nyetimber, Knorr and Mosimanns for all their help with the competitions, and of course Harrods and the Social brigade for the excellent lunch. Ben Purton, Operations Manager for Harrods Restaurants – and our Head Judge for the Chefs – made it all possible.

For more information about the Young Chefs Competition, please contact Ben Purton, Conseiller Culinaire:

Liam Rogers – Young Chef of the Year 2022