On Monday 23 April, the Hospitality and Catering department hosted The Chefs’ Forum London Chefs’ Spring Lunch at our TASTE Restaurant. Five of London’s most highly-skilled chefs helped 40 young people serve up a delicious four-course meal for around 70 catering industry professionals.
Various industry suppliers and chefs from many London-based restaurants attended the event including guests from Dorsett Hospitality, Bragard, Santa Maria and Koppert Cress.
Nearly £900 was raised to support young people with travel costs in accessing work experience, and essential equipment and helping colleges to fund employer trips and visits.
Carlos Martinez and Stefano Cilia from Chucs (Harrods) guided the students on the starter, a delicious slow-cooked pork belly, Granny Smith & lime texture, sweet & sour mustard seeds, salt & caramel hazelnut and gooseberries.
Chef Daniele Codini from The Ned prepared an exquisite fish course of Turbot with hazelnut crumb, asparagus, fregola and clams sponsored by M&J Seafood, cooked to perfection using the award-winning Synergy Grill.
Chris Wheeler AHDB British beef and lamb ambassador from Stoke Park prepared a beautifully presented Roast fillet of QSM beef with Marmite oxtail ragout, watercress puree, charred spring onion, potato and trumpette mushroom terrine.
For dessert a delicious strawberry whipped ganache, lime Chantilly, créme fraiche ice cream and meringues were served, prepared by Biju Joshwa (Sheraton Park Lane) assisted by the students.
This fundraising event was organised by The Chefs’ Forum Educational Foundation CIC – incorporated by Specialist Food PR Professionals Catherine Farinha and Alexandra Duncan to raise vital funds to help disadvantaged young people enter the hospitality industry and provide essential support and equipment to local colleges.
Hosting the event for the second time, West London College underlined its commitment to the initiative of bridging the gap between industry and education, inspiring young chefs, enriching their learning and forging strong relationships with leading sector employers.
Denise Charles, Head of Hospitality at West London College, said: “We are delighted to be hosting our second Chefs’ Forum event at the college. Our partnership with the organisation has seen many of our students securing work experience and jobs on the back of showcasing their skills at quarterly events. The Chefs’ Forum Educational Foundation has agreed to fund a trip for our students to compete in Young Seafood Chef of The Year – This funding is a great help and it’s wonderful to see industry people supporting lunches like this to facilitate the raising of vital funds to enrich our students’ learning experience.”
Restaurant Manager and Hospitality Lecturer Sylvain Auger looked after guests with a team of fifteen students. Sylvain said: “Today has been a fantastic experience for our students, I love events like these where employers meet my students because it prepares them to be work ready and is reassuring for them to hear the same messages from external professionals as I impart to them every day. The food was superb and it was a great opportunity to showcase our students’ professionalism and skills.”