European Young Chef Award 2016


1.Regions should confirm their participation and finalists name by 30 September 2018 by submitting the fully completed application form.

2.IGCAT reserve the right to select 15 finalists that will compete in the European final 2018. By 15 October finalists will have their participation confirmed and will be sent details to organise their travel.

3.Finalists need to be aged 18-26 and full-time or graduates of a culinary school (within in 1 year of the competition). Proof of enrolment/graduation is required in the application form.

4.The competition dish should demonstrate innovation on a traditional recipe. Therefore, on the day prior to the competition, finalists will be asked to prepare two plates of the traditional dish (as it would be presented in local homes/restaurants). so that the innovation/transformation of the dish will be demonstrated effectively to the jury. This will also provide an opportunity for the finalists to familiarise themselves with the kitchen environment. The jury will note if the finalist has succeeded in improving the traditional dish.

5.The competition dish should be an innovation on the traditional recipe, that is ideally inspired by a local artist/musician from their region. The chefs are required to conceive and produce the plate themselves, bringing their own style and imagination to the competition as declared in the code of ethics which needs to be returned with the application form.

6.General kitchen equipment will be made available to all finalists unless specialist equipment is required. The host school (GMIT) will require a full list of equipment one month in advance of the competition. Finalists are expected to provide their own specialist equipment and no cost of same will be borne by the hosts. Finalists should bring their own knives.

7.The dish presented in the competition must use seasonal and local products, found in the markets of the region being represented. Greater weight will be given to finalists that demonstrate knowledge of specific plant or animal varieties distinctive to their region. The finalists should indicate in the registration document and in their presentation to the jury the use of animal and plant varieties to demonstrate their knowledge in this field.

8.As there are specific food hygiene regulations in the host school, all finalists must adhere to HACCP principles and ensure that the high-risk food products are handled appropriately and that the chill chain is not compromised during transportation. If there are any concerns around this the host school is happy to discuss individual requirements. To assist this process, the host school can facilitate the supply of ingredients at cost to the visiting region. Basic store cupboard ingredients will be provided.

9.On the day of the competition, the European finalist will make 4 portions of the innovative dish that had been presented in the regional selection process.

10.Cost price per plate should not exceed €4 – costing sheet to be provided as verification.

11.It is recommended to prepare a main course dish. It should not be a tapa serving.

12.In no event can the preparation of the dish exceed 2 hours and 30 minutes from start to completion. The only pre-competition preparation that is permitted is fermentation, curing, marinating or dehydration. Partially cooked food is not Any excessive preparation in advance of the competition will be noted and in a tie-break situation may be counted against the finalist. If in doubt, please seek advice from IGCAT prior to the competition.

13.The jury will observe the preparation and outcome of the dish including kitchen hygiene.

14.The finalist will have a maximum of 3 minutes to present the dish to the jury. This will be followed by jury questions. Please note that the finalists’ ability to communicate an original story and explain the cultural connection with the region will be assessed. The presentation should be given in English therefore he/she may be assisted by one person from the region that can interpret the presentation.

15.The region should prepare a 4-6 minute video that will be shown after the presentation, that should emphasis the agricultural landscape, heritage and cultural characteristics of the region, as well as the artistic influence that the chef sought to create the dish. Preferably it will also introduce the story of how the finalist was selected. The video either needs to be in English and/or have subtitles in English.

16.The finalists should bring two sets of uniform (jacket kitchen, trousers and hat). One for the first day and a 2nd set which may include sponsor logos for the competition day. Finalists will be given a GMIT apron for use in the kitchens so as to ensure clean jackets during the presentation.

17.The order of presentations will be staggered and therefore the start time for cooking preparation will be given to each finalist. IGCAT will decide the order of plates and the Head of Kitchen will ensure student start cooking at 10 minute intervals.

18.The finalists are expected to attend all activities and meals as organised in the programme. They should be reminded that they are acting as ambassadors for their regions and their behaviour and conduct needs to be appropriate at all times.

19.The jury have a set of criteria to mark each plate. When participation is confirmed the finalists will receive the criteria and weight applied to each. The jury are experts in their fields and the winners will be selected following a calculation of the scoring and a discussion between the jury. In a tie-break situation the President of the jury (that is always a celebrated chef) will make the final choice. The jury verdict is final and are not obliged to answer participants concerns individually on the day of the event. The jury will however provide written feedback to all participants including an individual breakdown of their scores and accompanying jury feedback, within one week following the competition.  No further correspondence will be entered into.

20.Only 1st, 2nd and 3rd prizes will be announced on the day. All winners and runners up however will be celebrated through the signing and awarding of IGCAT Young Chef Ambassador Awards. As Joan Roca aptly notes – all finalists are winners!

Contact us
To submit an application and for more information see:

The European Young Chef Award 2018 is organised by IGCAT and 

With the support of