Jack Mcharg has been named BM’s Chef of the Year after impressing the judges with his balance of flavours, execution and style at the live cook-off final.
Jack, a chef manager at one of workplace caterer BM’s client sites in Basingstoke, was awarded not only the title but a three-day, all-expenses-paid culinary trip to Cornwall. This will include one-on-one cooking sessions using top quality Cornish produce with BM chef director Pete Redman and Chris Bolan, head chef of Michelin-starred Trinity restaurant in London.
Following meals at Michelin-starred No6 by Paul Ainsworth in Padstow and Outlaw’s New Road in Port Isaac will be a trip to Coombeshead Farm for dinner and an overnight stay, as well as a farm tour and pig butchery masterclass.
More than 20 chefs from across the company entered the competition by submitting a seasonal menu for 20 guests. These entries were whittled down to a final four, who competed in a live cook-off at in London.
Each finalist was tasked with producing two canapés, cooking and serving a whole duck along with garnishes, and two petit fours, all for four covers in just three hours.
Jack’s canapés were a goats’ cheese and truffle cannelloni with walnut ketchup, and a faggot made with duck liver and heart on crispy duck skin and celeriac purée. His petit fours included an Islands Chocolate sablé biscuit with pistachio tuille and an almond financier with blackberries.
BM chef director Pete Redman was joined on the judging panel by Adam Byatt, BM consultant chef and chef-patron at Trinity in London’s Clapham, as well as Mark Kempson, executive chef at Michelin-starred Kitchen W8 in Kensington.
Pete said: “Jack is such a worthy winner of the BM Chef of the Year title, having demonstrated skill and class when cooking and presenting his dishes. It was a very close result and ended up with there being just one point in it, but Jack’s seasoning, depth of flavour and understanding of the ingredients just tipped it in his favour.
“This competition is such a great opportunity for our chefs to flex their creativity, get a taste of culinary competitions and learn from their colleagues working across the business. It was by no means easy and all the chefs who took part should be very proud of having shown up and pushed themselves to perform at the standard they displayed.”
Antony Prentice, BM’s managing director, added: “The BM Chef of the Year competition is a great way to challenge, inspire and celebrate the culinary prowess of the brilliant chefs we have working at BM sites up and down the country.
“The event really showcased the talent we have within the group, not least our newly crowned Chef of the Year, Jack. A huge congratulations to Jack and all the shortlisted finalists.”