City College hosts first Tri-College Hospitality Competition

Published: 2nd July 2018

Published by City College Southampton

Last Friday (29th June 2018) Hospitality and Catering students from City College, Fareham College and Highbury College took part in a MasterChef-style intercollege competition which saw 50 Level 1 – Level 3 Hospitality and Catering students compete across different rounds designed to test their food preparation and cooking skills.

The Tri-College Competition was organised and sponsored by Southampton-based food wholesaler, Harvest Fine Foods, and held at City College’s Aspire Restaurant and professional training kitchens.

Level 1 students were asked to demonstrate their fine-dicing skills by producing an array of French vegetable cuts against the clock. Level 2 students were given 30 mins to create two identical plates of risotto using ingredients from a produce table, while Level 3 students had just 60 minutes in which to create a chicken main course using a mystery box of ingredients. Part-time students and apprentices were tasked with creating a fresh pasta dish.

In addition to the culinary challenges, there was also a front of house round where hospitality students had 45 minutes to lay up a table – themed around this summer’s festival of football – suitable for a five-course celebration meal.  

Supporting the event were sponsors Harvest Fine Foods, Tilda Rice and Essential Cuisine, who all donated ingredients and produce for the students to use. 

Speaking about the competition, Phil Clark, Development Chef at Harvest Fine Foods, said: "As a company, we want to encourage the students to enjoy the food, enjoy the cooking and gain as much experience as they can before they go out to the industry. The students are the future chefs, future buyers, and we want to help encourage more young people into the industry. We also wanted to help bring the colleges together and felt a competition like this was a great way to do it."

Ali Kent, City College’s Vice Principal, presented the medals and added: "I’m delighted that we are the first hosts of this hospitality competition and have enjoyed working with Highbury College, Fareham College and Harvest Fine Foods to deliver what has been a fantastic competition. The students have all done extremely well today and should be very proud of what they’ve achieved. The dishes they created, within such a short space of time, were incredible. I hope this is the first of many competitions that local Hampshire colleges take part in together in the future."

The talents of City College students were evident with the awarding of five bronze, 11 silver and one gold standard for their entries. Hospitality student, Courtney, also won Best in Class for her fantastic St George’s table lay-up. Huge congratulations go to all of the participants.