Macdonald pair named Visionary Mentor and Visionary Chef of the Year 2011

By Luke Nicholls

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Chef

Rohan Nevins (left) with teammate Aiden Byrne
Rohan Nevins (left) with teammate Aiden Byrne
Michelin-starred chef Aiden Byrne mentored Rohan Nevins to win the Visionary Mentor of the Year and Visionary Chef of the Year 2011.

Byrne, chef proprietor of the Church Green in Lymm and the British Grill at the Macdonald Craxton Wood Hotel in Ledsham, and Nevins, sous chef at the Macdonald Bath Spa Hotel, went head-to-head in a seven-hour competition inspired by and judged by Michelin-starred chefs Sat Bains and Monica Galetti.

Byrne, who was previously Tom Aiken’s head chef at his Chelsea restaurant and has worked with several other high-profile chefs such as Paul Rankin and David Adlard, said: “This event helps to raise culinary standards in the UK and encourages new blood to come forward and develop into the food stars of the future.

“I was confident that our dish would be well received but could never have predicted such a fantastic response from the diners.

“Rohan has been an excellent chef to mentor and the future certainly looks very bright for him.”

13,000 web votes

Together the pair delivered a main course of hare wrapped in chicory and sage to the table of 150 diners at The Lakes Hotel School in Kendal. As well as enjoying the 10-course meal, the diners also took part in the judging on the night, their choices were collated with 13,000 web votes that were counted throughout the duration of the event.

Byrne and Nevins secured 75 per cent of the votes. Monica Galetti, from the BBC show Master Chef the Professionals, was on hand to present the chefs with their trophies. Nevins has also won a trip to Joel Robuchon in Tokyo.

The event, organised by Gordon Cartwright, managing director of Visionary Dining and former AA restaurant inspector, also raised £3,400 for Hospitality Action - the hospitality industry benevolent organisation.

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