Young cooks with passion wanted for Taste Awards
PASSION, heart and a willingness to learn are key to a successful cooking career as a young chef.
That is the view of Tom Rains, 36, head chef at The Daffodil in Cheltenham.
The Taste of Gloucestershire Food and Farm Awards are being held in October, and young chefs are being urged to take part.
And Philip Mayo, apprentice chef at The Daffodil, urged confident young chefs to go for the award.
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He added: "If you believe at a young age you can see yourself behind the pass every day, giving the best food you can to the public and you believe in yourself, then there is no holding you back.
"You need that drive and determination to come back from your mistakes and to never give up."
Philip started cooking at the age of eight and knew he wanted to be a chef from the moment he picked up his first pan.
The apprentice of four months said he used to help his mother in the kitchen preparing Sunday lunches and moved on to a catering diploma at Gloucestershire College.
The 18-year-old said: "My mother used to work in the catering industry and I just grew up with food around me all my life.
"The younger you start, the better."
Tom took Philip on at the Montpellier Chapter and retained him when he moved to The Daffodil.
He encouraged passionate young chefs, who have a willingness to learn to become keep at it.
He said: "I look for a tough mentality, and their willingness to learn and their passion. They must have that sparkle about them."
He insists on taking his apprentices young, and said he wants to teach and build up his young apprentices to eventually help run his kitchen.
He said: "Philip is always in early, and always starts the day with a smile on his face.
"He works tough shifts and he gets some hard days, but he always bounces back."
Philip has big plans and said he hoped to finish his apprenticeship and work his way up the line.
In the long term, he would like to run his own modern kitchen, but he is keeping his feet firmly on the ground.
The Taste of Gloucestershire Awards recognises the best of our local food and drink producers and suppliers. There will be an awards ceremony in October.
Visit www.thisisgloucestershire.co.uk/taste by September 7 to nominate.