Grand Hotel York's Harry Blades is Delifresh 'Young Chef of the Year' | York Press – York Press

York’s 5-star hotel, The Grand, enjoyed success when it hosted the first cooking event of its kind.
The top hotel’s Harry Blades took top honours in the first-ever Delifresh ‘Young Chef of the Year’ competition.
Staged at the Grand’s own state-of-the-art Cookery School, the event saw young chefs aged under 23 judged by world-leading chefs including Yorkshire’s own Andrew Pern, chief director of the Star Inn series of venues.
On the day of the finals last week, Harry beat nine other contestants in the kitchen, after competing against 79 in the first round.
For his showcase of incredible dishes, Harry won a luxury three-day trip to France to work alongside culinary expert Gareth Ward, Chef Patron at two-Michelin-starred Ynyshir Restaurant and Rooms in rural Wales.
Harry, who works within the hotel’s restaurant The Rise, served up a delectable roasted duck breast with a duck confit foie gras bonbon, celeriac purée, red cabbage and apple gel, drizzled in a rich, duck jus.
For his second course, he served a mouth-watering chocolate mousse with raspberry sorbet, and chocolate tuile finished with a chocolate and Szechuan crumb, gold leaf and raspberries.
Harry said: “It’s a great honour to be awarded the Delifresh Young Chef winner this year and I could not think of a better place to have won it than in the hotel I cook for.
“Our Head Chef, Ahmed Abdalla has been a total inspiration for me, helping me through the many extra hours spent in the kitchen refining my dishes for today. The hospitality industry can be challenging but days and events like this gives us confidence in our culinary careers and how we can grow.”
Ahmed told the Press he was ‘over the moon’ with the result, taking pride in seeing his staff progress in his kitchen.
“We’ve now had 2 young chefs win completions across the region which just shows there is a willingness to learn and be the best,” he said.
The Grand Hotel, York, General Manager Simon Mahon added the hotel was ‘really proud’ of Harry’s win and the progress he has made at the Grand.
“As well as being a real team player, Harry’s dedication to improving his culinary skills is evident in all he does and his passion for food is fantastic.  We look forward to seeing him continue to grow under the tutelage of the senior Culinary team here at the hotel.
The Grand Hotel’s The Cookery School also allows guests to put their own culinary skills put to the test with the guidance of Head Tutor, Marc Williams.
Delifresh is an independent food service supplier, founded in 2002, whose customers include Michelin-starred restaurants, hotels, events and conference facilities.
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