Jerome Ianmark Calayag has been announced as the winner of the UK & North Europe regional final of S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2020. Taking place in London on the 12th November, the competition saw fifteen of the best young chefs from the UK, Sweden, Ireland, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands compete in the live cook off in front of an esteemed panel of judges. Jerome’s win willnow see him joining the finalists of the other 11 Regions of the competition to compete at the Grand Finale that will take place in Milan in May, 2020.
Jerome Ianmark Calayag won the judges over with his signature dish, "Humble Vegetables".
Of the win, he said: “I am very excited to represent the UK & North Europe in Milan next year at the global final of the S.Pellegrino Young Chef Competition. I’ve spent a lot of time preparing for this evening and I’m grateful for all the support I have received. I’m looking forward to seeing where this competition will take me next.”
Jerome’s win is even more impressive, given a staggering 2,400 young chefs applied, all of whom demonstrated skills of a high calibre. Showing initial results of the commitment taken by S.Pellegrino towards gender balance and inclusivity, the percentage of women registered among the candidates increased to more than 10% this year.
An international jury panel of seven professional chefs were tasked with the challenging job of selecting one finalist and their signature dish to represent the UK & North Europe region at the Grand Finale of S.Pellegrino Young Chef 2020. This year’s panel included: Monica Galetti (UK), Adam Byatt (UK), Estee Strooker (Netherlands), Jess Murphy (Ireland), Frida Ronge (Sweden), Bjorn Svensson (Norway), and Brian Mark Hansen (Denmark).
Jerome has won the opportunity to compete for the overall title of S.Pellegrino Young Chef at the global final in Milan, however a further three young chefs were also awarded prizes at the Regional Final.
To reflect S.Pellegrino’s belief in and support of the transformative power of gastronomy and its impact beyond the kitchen, the following three awards have been introduced to the competition to complement the existing S.Pellegrino Young Chef award:
Acqua Panna Award for Connection in Gastronomy Winner: Timothee Martin-Nadaud
Fine Dining Lovers Food for Thought Award Winner: Nicolas Fagundes Galindo
S.Pellegrino Award for Social Responsibility Winner: Pippa Lovell
All of the winners of the additional three awards will also be invited to attend the Grand Finale, affording them another opportunity to network with some of the biggest names in gastronomy from around the globe.