They will compete against each other to win the award at the National Final in February at the Connaught Hotel in London.
The finalists are:
- Sophia Warland, RAF Odiham, Hampshire
- Christoph Schrottenbaum, Dinner at Heston Blumenthal, London
- Tom Noller, Sexy Fish, London
- Stephanie Beresforde, Scott’s Restaurant, London
- James Parum, Buckingham Palace, London
- Jennifer Santner, Fenchurch Restaurant, London
- Innes Haywood, L’Enclume, Cumbria
- Charlie Lee, Fera at Claridge’s, London
The overall winner of the competition will receive a package of mentoring opportunities, travel and placements from a group of the most senior service professionals in the country.
The finalists were chosen after they competed in regional finals which centred on taking on challenging tasks in front of some of the biggest names in the hospitality industry. Tasks included customer service and cocktail making, as well as an interview. They were aimed at testing the contestant’s abilities, social skills and presentation.
‘Extremely high standard’
Edward Griffiths, chairman of the judges panel and Trustee of The Gold Service Scholarship, praised the quality of the competition.
“The standard of this year’s competition is extremely high and the Regional Final really showcased the talent and tenacity of the competitors. Our top eight represent the best of the best in front-of-house service and all have, without a doubt, a bright future in the industry,” he said.
Finalist Jennifer Santner, assistant restaurant manager at Fenchurch Restaurant at Sky Garden, said: “This has been a fantastic competition to be a part of and I am really looking forward to finding out what the National Final has in store. I would love to win and have the opportunity to use this experience to develop my front-of-house career.”