Andrew Fairlie Scholarship
The finalists have been announced for the first Andrew Fairlie Scholarship!
The six aspiring Scottish chefs in the running for the “ultimate scholarship” in the industry include 23-year-old Abbie Clunie from Fife, who is currently working as Chef de Partie (CDP) at Craig Millar @ 16 West End and Emma-Rose Milligan, also 23 and from Kilmarnock, who will return to Chez Roux at Inverlochy Castle in September.
CDP at the Pompadour in Edinburgh, 25-year-old Jake Hassall has also made the final alongside Joseph Harte, aged 23, a Junior Sous Chef at Douneside House in Aberdeenshire and Ryan McCutcheon, aged 27 from Edinburgh who is currently Head Chef at Greywalls Hotel and Chez Roux.
The youngest of the finalists is 22-year-old Peter Meechan who is working as CDP at the Strathearn Restaurant at Gleneagles.
Spearheaded by HIT Scotland and supported by the First Minister, Scottish Government and Gleneagles, the scholarship was launched in February 2019 in recognition of Andrew Fairlie’s significant and lasting contribution to the hospitality industry.
The scholarship will recognise two outstanding individuals – one male and one female - who are forging ahead with their culinary career and working in Scotland.
Stephen McLaughlin, Restaurant Andrew Fairlie Head Chef and lead judge, said: "It was fantastic to see so many chefs in Scotland with such an obvious passion for food and an appetite for learning. It wasn’t an easy decision, however the final six are all there on merit. They were selected for their understanding of the ethos of Andrew Fairlie's culinary traditions, the essence of this included how they talked about themselves and their culinary ambitions, and how they created their menu."
The final stage of the competition will take place on the 24th October at Gleneagles, where each of the finalists’ skills will be put to the ultimate test.
Judge Gary Maclean, Scotland's National Chef, added: “The next stage of the competition will give the judges a greater understanding of the finalists’ skills and dedication to culinary excellence. As well as their technical abilities and creativity, we will also find out about their drive and why winning would mean so much to them and their career. The standard is high and we’re looking forward to hearing more from this talented group of young chefs.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “Andrew Fairlie did so much in his life and career to encourage the next generation of world class chefs in Scotland. The Scholarship in his name will ensure a fitting legacy is created and I am proud that the Scottish Government is supporting it.
“I am delighted that so many young chefs want to be among the first to benefit and I congratulate each of the six finalists who have reached the shortlist. I wish them well for the final stage of selection and have no doubt they will all shine throughout their careers.”
The chosen winners will gain industry-wide recognition as Andrew Fairlie Scholars and experience once-in-a-lifetime opportunities such as a practical stage in an international kitchen, a placement at the Culinary Institute of America and at Restaurant Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles.
Chef de Partie
Craig Millar @ 16 West End
Chef de Partie
Junior Sous Chef
Greywalls and Chez Roux
Chef de Partie
Strathearn at Gleneagles
Demi Chef de Partie
Chez Roux at Inverlochy Castle
The final - 24th October at The Gleneagles Hotel
A skills test in two parts. The finalists have to recreate a simple but highly detailed Andrew Fairlie dish, and then also show their individuality and creativity as a chef.
The prize and the judges
To find out more about the application process and what the finalists had to do to reach this stage, who will be judging the Final, and what the winners will receive, read about it here The process