George Mirosevich, a recent apprentice graduate from Hunter TAFE and employee from the Hunter Valley restaurant, Muse, will be heading to the UK next year having taken out the prestigious Brett Graham culinary scholarship.
The 18 year old from Nelson Bay beat runner-up David Coulthard from Emersons caf√© restaurant and Paul Niddrie from Rustica at the final round of the competition on Monday, 21 October 2013, at Hunter TAFE's Hamilton Campus.
Run by Hunter Chefs & Co in conjunction with Hunter TAFE, the competition offers a Brett Graham Scholarship and a First Creek Wines Front of House Scholarship.
Guest judge, Sydney chef Matthew Kemp, watched as the three finalists managed a group of third-year cooking apprentices to prepare 3-course meals for a total of 60 guests.
George, who has recently completed Certificate III in Hospitality (Cookery) at Hunter TAFE won a prize valued at $10,000. It includes a work experience opportunity at the Ledbury restaurant in London with Brett Graham (including flights to the UK and travel assistance) and enrolment into a Certificate IV in Commercial Cookery.
Eliza Stevenson from Mercure Resort Hunter Valley was also announced the inaugural winner of the First Creek Wines Front of House Scholarship. She was one of four hospitality workers who took part in a competition on Wednesday 16 October. Eliza will receive $3000 from First Creek Wines towards a food and/or wine industry learning experience and $2000 towards enrolment into a Diploma of Hospitality at Hunter TAFE.
Brett Graham, Newcastle's famous culinary export commended Hunter Chefs & Co and Hunter TAFE on the high calibre of training and said it is important for the hospitality sector to invest in the skill development of young talent.
“As an industry we need to focus more on front of house training and encourage it as a career path. The initiative of Hunter Chefs & Co and Hunter TAFE to introduce the First Creek Wines Front of House Scholarship is a strong positive step in this direction,” he said.