Barnes, who was a finalist in last year’s competition, beat five other finalists who all had to prepare ‘chartreuse of quail and sweetbreads with grape sauce’ during a live cook-off held at Westminster Kingsway College on Monday (14 April).
Speaking at the awards ceremony at The Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Knightsbridge, Barnes said: “Although I’d made the final last year, this year was harder - there was a big time pressure and I was still very nervous.
“It wasn’t any easier second time around, as you don’t know what you’re going to get to cook. L’Enclume staff have been very supportive and helped me practice dishes, but I hadn’t cooked this before.”
The 2014 Roux Scholarship finalists: -
Tom Barnes, L’Enclume (winner)
Scott Dineen, Goldman Sachs (Baxterstorey)
Sabrina Gidda, AIG Group (Restaurant Associates)
Richard Pascoe, Oulton Hall, (De Vere Hotels)
David Salt, BNY Mellon (Restaurant Associates)
David White, Barclays Wealth (ISS)
The young chefshad two-and-three-quarter hours to cook the Escoffier-inspired recipe in front of the judges. Joining the Roux family on the panel this year were Brian Turner, Gary Rhodes, David Nicholls, James Martin, Andrew Fairlie and Angela Hartnett.
Commenting on Barnes’ win, Michel Roux Jr said: “It was an amazing cook-off. We gave the finalists a very complex and tricky recipe however the dish showcased classic skills and Tom triumphed with his cooking, execution and great seasoning."
His uncle, Roux Sr, added: “It is great to see a repeat finalist and that he had enough guts to enter, and not only to enter but he won hands down. A wonderful piece of work - clean, beautifully seasoned.
“When you have been to the final before it can work for or against you. You can think to yourself ‘what am I doing here again?’ or you can just go there and tell yourself ‘this time it’s going to be mine’. He did what he knew in his mind he wanted to do.”
Barnes receives £5,000 courtesy of the Savoy Educational Trust, to support his development and an invitation to cook and train under the supervision of a leading chef at a three-Michelin-starred restaurant anywhere in the world for up to three months.