29 June 2016

Since winning the accolade of Young Chef of the Year last October, Chesterfield College student, 19 year old, James Greatorex’s career has gone from strength to strength.

His passion for food and expertise in the kitchen has just landed him his dream job with famous chef Heston Blumenthal.

The young chef is due to start working in Blumenthal’s famous restaurant, the Fat Duck in Berkshire, next month where he will work alongside other expert chefs in one of the many kitchens at the establishment, preparing food for customers who pay £255 for a unique dining experience.

James’ passion for cookery started at home at a young age where he would experiment with creating menus for his family. After leaving school he got a part time job in a kitchen of a local pub and came to college to enhance his skills.

Following the his competition win last autumn, one of the judges, Chris Mapp from the Tickled Trout was so impressed with James that he gave him a job where he has been able to enhance the skills he was learning at college.

James said:

“Working in a professional kitchen, studying at college and taking part in the Young Chef of the Year competition has really helped me to get to this stage in my career. I have had a brilliant lecturer who has always allowed me to develop and experiment which meant I could practice new techniques.

"I learnt skills at college that I hadn’t seen before and then was able to put them into practice in a commercial environment at work. The competition taught me a lot about cooking under pressure and was good practice for when I did my trial at the Fat Duck.”

Ian Matthews, Lecturer at Chesterfield College, said:

“When James came for his interview before he started his course it was clear that he had massive potential. For someone of his age, the way he spoke about food, the recipes he’d worked on and his drive to work in the industry stood out.

"I am not surprised that he has been snapped up by such a high profile restaurant so early in his career and we know he’ll go on to achieve great things.”

James has also been a massive inspiration for the three finalists in this year’s Young Chef of the Year competition.

The finalists found out about James’ new job just before they completed their cook off for the 2016 competition. Winners will be announced in October at Chesterfield’s Food and Drink Awards.