The hospitality industry is renown for its celebrity chefs who make a name for themselves with their TV shows and signature dishes, and it is the front of house staff who are merely seen as waiters, and seem to fall under their shadow. Although there is a whole art of service to being able to eloquently serve customers in a restaurant. This was demonstrated at the Restaurant Manager of the Year 2019 finals earlier this month when the finalists were putting food and beverage skills on show for all to watch.
Run by the Institute of Hospitality and the Academy of Food and Wine Service, the finals were held at The Savoy. From over 50 applicants there was fierce competition to become one of the 10 semi finalists. During the morning session, the semi-finalists were given tasks in four areas: recruitment and the skills gap; allergens; a business case study; and an interview with the judges. The four finalists then went on to act out two restaurant management scenarios (a staff briefing and a service scenario) in front of the VIP audience of more than 120.
The winner was Tomas Kubrik, from Kerridge’s Bar and Grill in London. Kubart wins the opportunity to attend a summer school at École Hôtelière de Lausanne to study hospitality management modules of his choice. The prize covers tuition, flights and accommodation. Other prizes include a year’s membership of the Institute of Hospitality and invitations to key industry events. All four finalists are given the opportunity to be mentored throughout the year by leading industry figures.
In early February another prestigious Front of House Food and Beverage Service skills competition comes to fruition as the winner of the Gold Service Scholarship will be announced at Claridges. With Patronage from Her Majesty The Queen, the Gold Service Scholarship has become the byword for excellence among emerging young professionals in the hospitality industry in the UK. Front-of-house candidates, aged 22-28, will undertaken a series of skills tests and tasks to assess their proficiency, focus, commitment and desire to succeed in the dynamic world of restaurants, hotels, and other catering establishments.
It is competitions such as these that help to turn around the image of hospitality and to showcase the level of skill needed to excel and deliver the best guest service. Although you don’t need to be working in industry to take part in such competitions. Fred Sirieix is hosting a new children’s TV show and is inviting 10 – 14 year olds to take part in his ‘Dream Team’ and run a restaurant of their own.
‘We are looking for children who will be working on the restaurant floor, coming up with a restaurant theme, welcoming and serving guests, as well as dealing with customer complaints. We are also looking for children who will be creating their own menu and cooking to a high standard, under pressure, whilst remaining calm.’
If you know of a child who has the charisma and charm to carry this off then email you application to [email protected]. Deadline 8th February 2019.