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Chef v Chef competition 2012 - Winners announced

The opportunity to take part in a prestigious cooking contest has given some of the area's top and aspiring chefs the chance to prove they are culinary champions. 

For the seventh year the Chef v Chef competition has taken place in the Shrubbery Restaurant at the City of Bath College, with the over 23 and under 23 categories judged by Gary Jones, the Executive Head Chef of the famous Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons restaurant, Stuart Mcleod, Development Director of, Scott Lucas of the Craft Guild of Chefs and Celebrity Chef, Martin Blunos. Cash and other prizes were on offer to the top performers. 

Inspired to cook by his Granny, Stephen Whittaker, 27, from City Café at Mint Hotel in Bristol made it a dream competition debut by taking the gold medal in the over 23 category. Silver went to Kamil Wojciech from Longleat Homewood Park Hotel and bronze was picked up by George Kostka of Ronnies Restaurant in Thornbury. 

"This was a really tough competition and the standard was incredibly high. I am really proud to have come out on top. I think this will push me to go in for other cooking competitions," said Stephen. 

Christian Abbott, from Brace and Brown's in Bristol won gold in the under 23 section, silver went to William Gayler from the Wheatsheaf at Combe Hay in Bath and bronze to Lauren Deaker, a City of Bath College student. 

In the past few years organisers have included an additional category for Junior Chefs for school years 9, 10 and 11, judged by Stuart Ash, Head Chef at Woods Restaurant in Bath and Jonathan Newberry of The Valley Smokehouse. 

Gold went to Cerys Lambert, 15, from John of Gaunt School in Trowbridge, who pipped last year's winner, Seb Shore from Norton Hill School into second place. Bronze was Jordan Mills of Writhlington Business and Enterprise School.

As a result of taking part in the contest Cerys is now more keen than ever to go further in her culinary training and has her heart set on a catering course and very much liked the look of the City of Bath College. 

Steve Benison, from City of Bath College, paid tribute to all the people who worked hard to make the competition such a success: "Without the efforts of all the partners, the college staff and the continued support of our sponsors, we couldn't possibly run this competition. It just goes to show what Bath can achieve when we all get together." 

Andrew Berman of Catering Services International said: "Once again we saw an impressive line-up which demonstrated real culinary excellence, excellent skills which delivered perfect flavours with a high quality presentation." 

This was the seventh year of the competition which was open to contestants within a fifty mile radius of Bath and driven by the City of Bath College, Bath The Initiative at B&NES and Initiative, Catering Services International and Woods Restaurant . It is also well supported by other local sponsors. The aim is to promote modern, high quality cooking using where possible, locally produced, seasonal produce, to help improve confidence and skills and therefore, economic development.

About the Chef v Chef competition
Chef v Chef is open to all talented local chefs within a 50 mile radius of central Bath. The annual competition is a joint 'not for profit' venture organised by Bath City College, The The Initiative at B&NES, Catering Services International, the UK’s leading specialist in catering and hospitality recruitment.