Young Highland Chef of Year Winner Announced at Food Celebration Event in Dornoch

Young Highland Chef of the Year 2018 winner announced at food celebration event organised by North Highland College UHI and the Roux Consultancy.

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Richie Bryan Gavryluk, 25, a chef de partie, at the Boath House in Nairn was announced the 2018 Young Highland Chef winner at a celebration dinner in Dornoch on Monday 29th October.

Richie, a previous Grampian Young Chef winner, has taken home the £1000 cash prize, a £2000 Robot Cook machine and a week of work experience with Michel Roux JR. at Le Gavroche in London.

The winning menu included a goat’s cheese tortellini with roasted beetroot, a main course of lamb rump with an olive tapenade and sweet of pear mousse, caramel pear, and red wine reduction with a spiced biscuit. Richie said, “I really didn’t expect to win, but I am so delighted, I really enjoyed the day cooking for the judges and with the other competitors in the kitchen.”

Judges this year, included Albert Roux OBE KFO, Glen Watson, Derek Johnstone and Tony Singh MBE. The runner-up prize of £250, Robot Coupe Blixer 3 machine and a week of work experience at the RAC Club was awarded to Joni Daniel Santos from Links House at the Royal Dornoch. Third prize of £100 and a Robot Coupe micro mix went to Sean Abernethy of the Scalloway Hotel in Orkney. 

The eight finalists were selected by the judges to compete were, Sean Abernethy (Scalloway Hotel), Darren Ross (Mingary Hotel), Duarte Cunha da Silva (The Carnegie Club), Richie Bryan Gaurycuk (Boath House), Juni Daniel Matos (Links House), Aiden Alexander Ward (Cawdor Tavern) Eddie Brown (Forvan Hotel) and Emma Rose Milligan (Inverlochy Castle).

Judge Glen Watson of the Belfry said, “It is always a great pleasure to come up here to Dornoch and inspire the contestants; all eight gave us extremely well presented and cooked array of dishes. The competition overall continues to grow in stature and quality, the finalists should be very proud of themselves.”

Members of the public and local schools enjoyed food demonstrations at the Burghfield House in Dornoch from Braehead Foods, celebrity chefs Michael Smith and Tony Singh MBE and head chef of Links House at Royal Dornoch, Javi Santos.

Ylva Haglund, Food Waste Campaigns Manager, Zero Waste Scotland: “It’s fantastic to see young people engaging in the fight against food waste. We hope that the young chefs’ competition to make delicious food with the least waste will inspire more people to do the same. Whether you’re working in a restaurant or rustling up a quick dinner at home, cutting down on food waste is good for the environment and good for your budget too. We were delighted to team up with Chef Tony Singh at this year’s event, to show people how they can make great food without anything ending up in the bin.”

Guests, judges and sponsors gathered in the marquee for the evening reception and announcement of awards before enjoying a 5-course taster menu meal prepared and served by North Highland College UHI staff and students. 

College Principal Donald MacBeath commented “This highly prestigious event has provided so many opportunities for our Hospitality students from Dornoch and Thurso to work and learn together. They have witnessed presentations and demonstrations from expert practitioners, supported the contestants in the kitchen and provided a fine-dining experience of the highest quality to our guests. They should all be very proud of their contributions to the overall success of the event” 

North Highland College UHI, part of the University of the Highlands and Islands, runs Burghfield House in Dornoch as a training restaurant.  The College and University partnership allows students to begin at access level and progress up to degree level.

The Young Highland Chef competition could not go ahead without the support of its sponsors. Special thank you to The Press & Journal. Robot Coupe, Olleco, Braehead Foods, Love Food Hate Waste, Glenmorangie House, Winterhalter, Instock, Swansons Fruit Company, Highland Council, ANTA, Cocoa Barry, Barony Mill, Highland Fine Cheese, Gigha Halibut, Cocoa Skye, Macgregors, Stephen Mackintosh Light and Sound, Nisbets, Gizzen Briggs, Links House, Spud Hut and Shore the Scottish seaweed co.

To start a career in hospitality or professional cookery, please see our course listing: https://www.northhighland.uhi.ac.uk/courses/