Craft Guild of Chefs aims to celebrate 100 Graduate Award Achievers in 2023

Talented and ambitious chefs have an exciting opportunity to push themselves into the spotlight and test their culinary skills at the Craft Guild of Chefs Graduate Awards 2023.

Over the last two decades, the Guild has seen an incredible 93 chefs achieve the pass mark and join an impressive list of names in the Graduate Awards ‘hall of fame’. Former achievers of the award include Mark Froydenlund, Sophie Wright, Luke Selby and Ruth Hansom who have all gone on to have successful culinary careers.

The Graduate Awards were founded, and are still led, by Steve Munkley, who is Vice-President of the Guild. He wanted to provide chefs in the early stages of their career with the opportunity to develop the skills they learnt in training and refine them in the workplace. Known as an exam rather than a competition, it provides a platform for chefs to progress to events such as Young National Chef of the Year. Those who make the grade receive a host of prizes ranging from culinary trips of a lifetime to products from the awards’ sponsors.

It only takes a few minutes for a young chef to enter the Graduate Awards, but it could be lifechanging. Chefs aged under 25 on the 1st of September 2023 are asked to complete an online form choosing whether to enter the Kitchen or Pastry Award but must submit by midnight on Wednesday, 19th April 2023. The Pastry Graduate Awards are driven by Will Torrent and Sarah Frankland, and are aimed at young pastry chefs, chocolatiers or level 3 students. Entrants do not need to be members of the Craft Guild of Chefs.

All the chefs who make the final in Kitchen and Pastry will be whisked away on a two-day Suffolk food tour in July where they will visit Aspalls Cider, Dingley Dell Farm, Pump Street Bakery and experience butchery, fishmongery and dessert demos at Infusions4Chefs. Finalists will also enjoy an overnight stay at Ufford Park Hotel.

Founder of the Graduate Awards, Steve Munkley said:

“Following our 20th anniversary celebrations last year we are now just seven chefs away from celebrating 100 Graduate Awards Achievers and our committee are determined to push through that goal this year. With support from mentors, our skills demonstration videos and the memorable two-day trip for finalists we’re determined we’ll be celebrating this special milestone.”