Apr 12 2018

On Tuesday 27 and Wednesday 28 March the 2018 TUCO Competitions took place, in which we competed in a number of different categories.

Many congratulations to Founder’s Sous Chef, Gary Smith, Chef de partie, Richard Bakaity and Conference and Hospitality Shift Leader Diana Comisescu who were awarded gold in the Cook and Serve Challenge. The team’s challenge was to cook and serve a three course meal, complete with aperitif and wine to a table of four in a restaurant setting within a 90 minute timescale. This included creating a centre piece for the table, menus, sourcing cutlery, serviettes, and crockery etc. 

Second year Media Arts student, Jack Wallis also won gold in the Bar Skills competition.  Jack had five minutes to produce and serve three original cocktails, while demonstrating excellent flavour, knowledge and technique. As a Media Arts student, Jack’s cocktails were all inspired by films that have previously been filmed at Royal Holloway. 

We were also awarded in a number of different categories including:

  • Ravikkanth Kanthiya, Sous Chef, was awarded silver and best in class in the Cup Cake Challenge
  • Robert Reid, Chef de partie, was awarded bronze in the Coffee Shop Style Sponge Cake
  • Sara Glasset, Pastry Chef was awarded bronze in the Afternoon Tea
  • Richard Bakaity, Chef de partie who was awarded bronze in the Cookie Challenge
  • Gary Smith, Sous Chef was awarded bronze in the Plated Main Course
  • Carol Vallejo, Head Chef, was awarded bronze in the Plated Vegetarian Main Course
  • Ravikkanth Kanthiya, Sous Chef was awarded merit in the Restaurant Plated Dessert.

Cost Sector Awards 

Many congratulations to Carol Vallejo, Head Chef at The Hub, who has been awarded the Chef award at this year's annual Cost Sector Catering awards. The award celebrates excellence in the food service industry across the private and public sectors, and Carol’s commitment to meeting the growing demand for vegan and vegetarian dishes helped her to win first prize. 

Carol has been head chef at The Hub for 12 years and oversees a team who produce a wide range of food, with a strong focus on street food inspired dishes. The daily menu includes Mexican, Sri Lankan, Turkish and Lebanese dishes, as well as stir fries, gourmet burgers and salad bars.

Carol was nominated for the award by her line manager Darren Coventry, who said: “I nominated Carol because her approach to food is fresh and exciting. She is forward thinking and innovative and is always looking for new ideas that she can incorporate into her menus. I’m delighted her achievements have been recognised – she’s a very deserving winner of the Chef Award.”