Two chefs from the University of Chester found a recipe for success when they brought home two gold awards from a prestigious national ceremony.
Held at the University of Warwick, the 2017 TUCO Competitions attracted more than 400 people to celebrate the exceptional talent within the higher education catering sector.
Artisan baker Dave Quinn wowed the judges of the salon culinaire section of the competitions and was awarded both gold and best in class status in the bread display and coffee shop style sponge categories.
In addition, Chef De Partie Chris Murphy was crowned winner of the campus speed cook challenge after demonstrating his skills in a tense live final.
The chefs went head-to-head with experienced competitors from across the country to win their respective titles.
Both hospitality stars stood out from the crowd after demonstrating their expertise and impressing a panel of expert judges with their accuracy, creative flair and presentation on the day.
Dave Quinn said: “It’s an honour to have been awarded these coveted titles, especially as the competition was so tough this year. I thoroughly enjoyed taking part in the TUCO Competitions and it’s been fantastic to meet and learn from all the other competitors – there really is an incredible wealth of talent within the HE sector and competitions like this are a wonderful opportunity for everyone to get together and showcase their skills.”
Chair of The University Caterers Organisation (TUCO), Matt White, said: “The expertise and innovation displayed across the higher education sector never fails to impress me and this year was no exception. Huge congratulations to all our competitors who demonstrated some truly outstanding skills over the past two-days.
“The salon culinaire bread display and coffee shop style sponge categories, as well as campus speed cook challenge proved to be yet another set of show-stopping events, with competitors highlighting the abundance of talent within the sector.
“The performance from those competing on behalf of the University of Chester was truly exceptional and they all thoroughly deserved to win. What really shone through was their passion, which is what makes the difference between a good chef and a great one.”
The salon culinaire and campus speed cook challenge were two of 18 categories at the TUCO Competitions, which also included barista skills, chefs’ challenge, cook and serve and bar skills.
A total of 150 experts from the higher education sector took part to showcase their knowledge and creativity.
The University Caterers Organisation (TUCO) is the leading membership organisation for in-house caterers operating in the higher and further education sectors.
As part of its commitment to developing its member, TUCO created its annual competitions as a platform for sharing industry knowledge.