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M Restaurants has announced its Young Chef of the Year winners 2018

Hamish Pearce of Pidgin was crowned 2018's Young Chef of the Year in an awards ceremony at M Victoria, with Jamie Gardner and Adebayo Folarin grabbing the other two prizes

THE VOTES ARE in, the plates are clean, and this year's Young Chef of the Year competition has (almost) come to a close. The competition – run in association with Bookatable by Michelin, Champagne Pommery, Collins King Associates and Foodism – aimed to give a roster of young ambitious chefs hands-on experience running a whole kitchen for a night, and to encourage more young people into the hospitality industry. Each contestant served a one-off four-course menu, with judges from across the industry and the public – as well as M's founder Martin Williams and group executive chef Mike Reid – voting for their favourite.

The top prize of Young Chef of the Year was claimed by Hamish Pearce, a chef at Hackney restaurant Pidgin; Jamie Gardner from Coal Shed won the Outstanding Menu award; and chef Adebayo Folarin won Best Marketeer. "Hamish gave us the whole package we were looking for," said Reid, "an inventive menu, executed superbly with a full house on his pop-up night. He certainly gave his dinners an experience they will remember."

Pearce won a trip to Pommery, and both Pearce and Gardner won a hand-made knife from Blenheim Forge, to boot. Most excitingly, each of the two will be given five days to run M Victoria's Raw Bar kitchen by themselves, giving them invaluable first-hand experience and giving you the chance to taste their winning menus.

Pearce's menu – which includes endive with baba ganoush, liver, nettles and coal, and venison with fermented green gazpacho, new potato sauce, onion and chard – will be available at M Victoria from 14-18 August, while Jamie Gardner's will be served from 7-11 August.

To book your place at M Restaurants' Young Chef of the Year 2018 winners' dinners, click here and enter the code 15 at checkout for an exclusive 15% discount. For more information, go to mrestaurants.co.uk

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