Lorna McNee, Junior Sous Chef of
Andrew Fairlie, was today crowned Game Chef of the Year following a
cook off with nine other chefs from across the UK.
The competition organised by Scottish game processor Braehead
Foods has been running for the last five years, and each year the
level of applicants keeps getting higher. The search to find the
UK's best professional game chef began in August with entries
flooding in from all over the UK. Applicants were required to
submit two game based dishes, one starter and one main course with
the judges looking for fresh, innovative dishes. This year judges
noted that contestant's dishes were very 'on trend', hinting to a
new depth to game cuisine.
The competition came to an end yesterday, Monday 25th January,
when Ms McNee was crowned the first woman to win Game Chef of the
Year. Not only has the competition experienced its first female
leader but also it's first female applicants, with two making there
way to the final. Adam Thomason of Restaurant Associations and
Andrew D'Amery of Delaware North Wembley Stadium, both from London
finished joint runners up in the competition.
All 10 finalists each received £100 and had the chance to
prepare, cook and present two game based dishes to the panel of
judges; Braehead Foods Consultant Chef Paul Gayler MBE, Braehead
Foods Executive Chef Joe Queen and Ian McAndrew of the Academy of
Culinary Arts. This year's winner, Lorna, has won a once in a
lifetime trip to Sweden where she will hunt wild boar, courtesy of
Highland Game, as well as three MAC knives courtesy of Continental
Lorna McNee has been working at Andrew Fairlie Gleneagles for
seven years now, and it was Andrew and Stephen McLaughlin (Head
Chef) themselves who encouraged Lorna to enter the competition.
Lorna said 'the reason I entered was to push and challenge myself
into places I wouldn't usually go and come out my comfort zone.
That's why competitions like this are important to be present in
Scotland as well as England.'
Lorna's starter was roast teal, salad of beetroot, apple,
mushroom and warm vinaigrette. For her main course she prepared
blue mountain hare, smoked game farce and spiced red cabbage. Paul
Gayler noted that Lorna's 'menu was well balanced, creative and
professionally executed - a winning formula.'
Paul Gayler further commented that 'this was one of the hardest
competitions in recent years, causing many a debate in the judging
room. Winning scores were collated with a mere point between them
at times; all competitors should be extremely proud of their work
and we hope to see you back next year.'
For more information please visit www.braeheadfoods.co.uk/gamechef or follow us
on Facebook.com/GameChefOfTheYear or Twitter @GameChefOfYear
If you're interested in applying for Game Chef of the Year
2017, please click here and we will keep you
up to date.