He beat two other finalists to be crowned the winner on Saturday 10 September, and will now go through to the global final in Paris on 16 November, competing against the finalists from countries including Japan, France, Holland, Belgium, and Switzerland.
Holuss was presented with his prizes – which included a trophy, £2,000, and a magnum of Champagne Taittinger ‒ by Roux Jr and marketing director for the Champagne house, Vitalie Taittinger.
Also in this year’s UK final were Quentin Plateaux, sous chef at Roux at Landau, and Samuel Fisk, head chef at Freshfields – Restaurant Associates.
The competitors were asked by organisers to create a dish using a whole fillet of beef, and were also tasked with creating a dessert dish based on the theme of a ‘Diplomat Pudding’, chosen by Michel Roux Jr on the day.
Holuss – who is originally from Mauritius ‒ also won the 49th UK contest last year, ultimately coming second in the international final to Jérémy Desbraux from L’Hotel de Ville à Crissier in Switzerland.
This year’s UK contest was judged by an 11-strong panel, including the Mayfair-based chefs Roux Jr, Claude Bosi from Hibiscus, Arnaud Bignon from The Greenhouse, and Rachel Humphrey from Le Gavroche, plus Michael Wignall from Gidleigh Park in Dartmoor.
The judges also included Romauld Feger from the Four Seasons Park Lane, Steve Groves from Roux at Parliament Square, Roux Jr’s daughter and chef Emily Roux, royal chef Mark Flanagan, Amandine Chaignot from The Rosewood hotel in Holborn, and Andre Garrett from Cliveden House in Berkshire.
The Taittinger Prix Culinaire International was set up 50 years ago. Open to chefs aged 24-39 who have over five years’ professional cooking experience, it seeks to promote young and upcoming chefs and traditional French cookery techniques.