Northumberland College’s Hospitality and Catering students are celebrating after scooping various wins and overall college winner at the recent NECTA Northern Chef of the Year competition.
Organised by the North East Culinary and Trade Association, the competition hopes to raise the profile and quality of the catering and hospitality trade in the North of England.
The students entered into various categories demonstrating cooking, cake decorating, front of house, cocktail and coffee making and bread making.
Staff and students were delighted to get NECTA Overall College Winner 2019 for the second year in a row. They also won NECTA Future Chef of The Year, Andy Brown Memorial Award for Best Student, 7 gold, 5 silver, 5 bronze and two Merit awards.
Level 2 floristry student Ashleigh Prendergast also won 1st place in the Level 2 Live Floristry round at the event, coming just a few days after gaining 3rd place for her display at the prestigious Harrogate Flower Show.
Chef Lecturer, David Jackson who trained the catering students to help them with their NECTA success said:
“The students have worked extremely hard preparing for the competition. Their dedication is reflected in the medals and trophies they have won. I am delighted with the result and extremely proud of the students and what they have achieved.
“It is really beneficial for students to add their competition success to their CVs to show future employers. Three of our past competition winners have had job offers based on their NECTA success at prestigious restaurants including Six at Baltic, 21 and Slaley Hall."
The students and staff will host a NECTA presentation evening soon in the college’s Gallery Restaurant to showcase their dishes to the public.
James Middleton, who is studying Level 1 Hospitality and Catering, won two medals for front of house and table setting at the competition. He said:
“At first, I was quite nervous but with practice, support from college staff and self-belief you can achieve anything.
“I was so pleased that I ended up winning medals and best of all, helping Northumberland College win the NECTA's best college 2019.”
Chef David Kennedy, from 21 Restaurant Newcastle, acted as mentor for Future Chef winner Sarah Robertson. He said:
“21 have partnered with Northumberland College to secure Future Chef of The Year winners for two years in a row. Sarah Robertson has worked tirelessly on her winning dish, showing an excellent level of commitment and passion.
“We are happy to continue to work with Northumberland College to develop the region’s future chefs. I would like to add, the overall achievement of the college in terms of NECTA, Andy Brown Memorial Cup and Future Chef are a huge accolade for one college to win and is a testament to the level of skill and professionalism of all the staff and students involved."
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