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Professional cookery students and staff impress at world’s greatest culinary competition

Five professional cookery students and three chef lecturers from City College Norwich have won a bronze medal in the prestigious Junior Parade des Chefs competition at the British Open Cookery Championships. The event, which has been described as the world’s greatest culinary competition, took place at the Birmingham NEC arena.

The college was selected to take part in the competition for their excellent reputation and high standard of food preparation and service. The event saw level 3 professional cookery students Chloe Saterlay, Dominic Barrett, Meg Greenacre and Stacey Jolly; and level 2 professional cookery student Lewis Streeter, working alongside lecturers James Phillippo (team captain), Mark Bradly and Bob Oberhoffer (team manager) to prepare a three course menu for over 100 diners at a special lunch service.

The team followed the competition’s strict criteria and worked together to design their own dishes which included roasted tenderloin and braised cheek of Swannington farm to fork pork and banoffee cheesecake with bitter chocolate sorbet. James Phillippo devised a rigorous training process in the lead up to the competition which saw the team practising their dishes every Tuesday evening. 

The competition has allowed students to extend their existing culinary knowledge and further develop leadership skills. They have also been able to showcase their talents and enhance their personal presence in the industry.

Lewis Streeter, 18, from Norwich said:
“I felt very relieved when we found out that we had won a bronze medal. Taking part in the competition was really difficult but it was a really good challenge for me and the rest of the team – it was amazing.”

Stacey Jolly, 18, from Norwich said:
“We worked in a glass kitchen which meant that we were constantly being watched throughout the competition. It was a little daunting at first but after a while it just felt like a normal lunch service. The main thing I have learnt from this experience was team work as we really had to work well together to produce our dishes to a high standard.”

Team captain James Phillippo, Lecturer, City College Norwich said:
“I asked a lot from the students both during and in the run up to the competition but they were all incredible throughout. We’ve never done anything like this before and it was even a little daunting for me but the whole team performed exceptionally well. I have already seen an improvement in their work at college as they have been more meticulous and have even started taking on more responsibility during service in our Debut Restaurant.”

Joe Mulhall, Curriculum Programme Manager said:
“I was fortunate enough to be able to dine at the Junior Parade des Chefs completion lunch. It was an honour and privilege to witness the level of skills demonstrated by our students and staff. Having our students showcasing their skills and competing at this high level is a testament of their determination, responsibility and precedence at their craft level. I am exceptionally proud of the team and congratulate them on their achievements”


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