McCormick Flavour Challenge at Hotelympia, and the winners are...

Samantha Way and Amy Duthie, both from Compass Group UK, have won the McCormick Flavour Challenge at Hotelympia with their interpretation of two of the flavour trends from last year’s Flavour Forecast.

The duo managed to impress the judges by producing a pair of delicious dishes consisting of venison fillet served with fondant potatoes, a port and blueberry jus, carrots, mushrooms, artichoke purée and a blueberry salt, for the trend, ‘Sour + Salt’.  For their second trend, ‘Cookies Reimagined’, their creation was ‘Tea and Biscuits’ which consisted of vanilla macarons with white chocolate ganache, tea snaps, shortbread, raspberry panna cotta, vanilla bavarois and Earl Grey ice cream.

All teams had to demonstrate real innovation in flavour using last year’s Flavour Forecast from McCormick with just 45 minutes to prepare, cook and present a two-course meal; either a starter and main course or a main course and dessert.  Competitors had to include two of the flavour trends from the 2015 Flavour Forecast, one in each dish.  The Flavour Forecast insights reflect emerging global trends that are shaping the tastes of the future so the competitors were expected to demonstrate originality and an ability to create a stimulating combination of dishes.

Steve Love, Principal Research Chef, McCormick (UK) Ltd said, “The standards set by the competitors never fail to impress; not only in the skills demonstrated on the day whilst under immense pressure, but the level of planning and creativity that goes in to their menus.  By supporting this event, we hope to encourage inspiration and share our passion in flavour.”

Samantha Way added, “We were both really excited to take part in this competition, especially as Schwartz is such a popular brand.  We were intrigued by the trends, they opened our minds up to new methods and flavours.  It was great to try something different and approach food with a fresh outlook on flavour.  The competition itself was definitely a tough one; especially when you look up and see chefs who have influenced you watching closely and tasting our food.”
Since 2000, the annual Flavour Forecast has identified top trends and ingredients driving the future of flavour.  Created by a global team of McCormick experts — including chefs, culinary professionals, trend trackers and food technologists — the Flavour Forecast inspires culinary exploration and innovation around the world. 

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