Avenue 141 Reach the Final for College Restaurant of the Year 2017
After being shortlisted to the final 16 colleges, our Hospitality and Catering students headed to London to take part in the College Restaurant of the Year competition. After a long day of competing, they successfully returned home as finalists!
The competition was developed as part of the AA Award in conjunction with People 1st, to recognise accredited colleges that have shown outstanding achievements in a realistic working environment.
Following nominations, the shortlisted colleges attended a special judging day in London where industry experts put candidates through a series of practical tasks in order to shortlist three finalists.
The Fareham College students were put through their paces on the day. The first task was to develop a business plan for a new restaurant concept suited to celebrity chef, Tom Kerridge. The students spent a while researching Tom’s background experience and cooking style, and while most of the other competitors chose pub concepts, the Avenue 141 team developed an innovative combination of a high-end restaurant with a rustic farm shop edge.
The idea behind the restaurant was for the customers to come in and enjoy delicious food cooked by Tom Kerridge and his chefs, and then have the option to buy the same fresh produce from an attached deli, which they could take home and cook for themselves.
Level 2 Professional Cookery students, Ben Smith and Lily Poling represented Avenue 141 on the day. Ben said: “We had such a great time competing on the day. It was fantastic to meet Tom Kerridge, who sat with us for a long time discussing our restaurant concept and giving us feedback. He was really enthusiastic about our ideas and the way he spoke about the industry was really inspiring. I chose to study Catering at Fareham College because I’ve always enjoyed cooking. Now I’m looking forward to continuing on to level 3 while learning in one of the top three restaurants in the country!”
The AA College Rosette Scheme was designed to recognise the efforts of students, both front and back of house, who are the future of our hospitality industry. The college accreditation process recognises colleges offering exceptional hospitality training and those that perform above and beyond in a specialist field as centres of excellence.
Avenue 141 is run by the professional Hospitality and Catering students who are committed to providing every customer with a unique dining experience. The students work tirelessly to ensure customers receive the highest level of service, whilst enjoying high quality food that has been cooked using locally sourced ingredients.
Head of Hospitality and Catering, Oonagh Taylor, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been one of the final three colleges shortlisted for the award. Our students worked incredibly hard in preparation for the event and delivered exceptionally on the day. All of our students work extremely hard in Avenue 141 to ensure a high standard of food and service is provided all year round so it is fantastic to see them getting the recognition they deserve!
We are so proud to be a part of this prestigious award and send our best wishes to the other two finalists; Milton Keynes College and South Cheshire College. We now look forward to travelling to London where the winner of the AA College Restaurant of the Year award will be announced at the annual AA Hospitality Awards dinner on 25 September at Grosvenor House, London.”
With big contenders from across the country entering the competition, the Avenue 141 team are delighted to have been shortlisted to the final three. They have now been invited to an award ceremony in September, where the winner of College Restaurant of the Year 2017 will officially be announced.