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20 February, 2020

Crewe Royal Arcade update

20 February, 2020


Finalists announced for Taste Cheshire Young Chef of the Year


The four finalists for Taste Cheshire Young Chef of the Year have been announced.

They will battle it out on stage at the Chester Food and Drink Festival this Easter, following the final heat which was completed at Cambrian College recently.

Taste Cheshire CEO Stephen Wundke said he was thrilled to see the level of capability amongst our young chefs.

“The cooking scene across our restaurants and pubs of Cheshire has never been more vibrant and it is great to know we have our colleges who are bringing along the next wave of outstanding chefs.

“We were all so impressed with our four finalists and I am intrigued to know who will be crowned champion.”

The chefs were required to produce two identical restaurant standard dishes in 45 minutes.

These could be starter, main or dessert – and the budding chefs were judged on the originality of the dish, the provenance of the ingredients, technique, presentation (and of course taste!)

Taste Cheshire chef ambassador Gaile Wundke praised the youngsters, saying: “It was thrilling to see so many young people, from the ages of 16 upwards cooking to such a high standard.

“The semi-finals were all about pressure, against the clock and knowing they were being judged by outsiders. They did an amazing job and should be proud of their achievements to date.

“I wish them all the very best in the finals and I am looking forward to judging the final.”

The four finalists are as follows…


Anna Banasiak, aged 20, who cooked a dish of pork tenderloin, sweet and sour cabbage, fondant potato, a honey glaze sauce and a foam mustard.


Byron Valentine aged 17, and his dessert of rhubarb jelly, mille chocolate mousse, dark chocolate soil, meringue flowers and chocolate twigs.


Callum Jones, aged 16, who also made a dessert, which was a deconstructed cheesecake of white chocolate and lemon with a raspberry coulis


Matthew Norman aged  17, who prepared best end of Welsh lamb, mange tout, garden peas, asparagus and chantenay carrots.


The fours finalists will cook on Sunday 21st April at the Taste Cheshire Food and Drink Festival, on the main stage where Great British Menu judge, Andi Oliver will preside over proceedings.

For more information or to buy tickets to the festival go to