GOURMET gold was achieved by NOW catering trainees at the annual IFEX awards, thanks in no small part to the expert guidance and mentoring from Lurgan super chef Liam McEvoy of The Stables.
Liam has been coaching NOW clients with learning disabilities, honing their catering skills and helping them to create that extra gourmet edge with their dishes.
The hard work from Liam and trainees Brendan Donnelly and Janette Green certainly paid off with two gold medals in the culinary ability awards, the only two golds of the day.
NOW really appreciated the time Liam committed to volunteering while juggling a full-time job, a young family and his own preparation for his entry into the IFEX awards.
Liam also competed for ‘IFEX Chef of the Year 2012’ and was successful in gaining a well deserved Silver award.
Liam said: “It was a pleasure working with NOW and am delighted for the two gold medal winners they worked hard and a mention to Anne Cheevers and Jayne McStay who played leading roles.”
Liam continued: “Whilst juggling family life with a recent addition Olly McEvoy to the family, I was over the moon with my silver medal for the IFEX 2012 Senior Chef of the year.
“This was the blue ribbon event of the three day competition with a brief of mystery basket, serving four course of amuse bouche, starter, main and desert with an allocated time of one hour 30 minutes. This is a true test of any chef’s skills and I was delighted to finish second under the circumstances. I plan to continue volunteering with NOW and competing myself.”
Liam will be running his famed gourmet evening of a seven-course tasting menu in The Stables complex Lurgan, July 28.
Brendan and Janette, who will be both be at the gourmet evening, train with NOW, a training and Employment organisation supporting adults with learning disabilities, difficulties and Autistic Spectrum Disorders, for their NVQ in catering.
Proud NVQ coordinator Anne Cheevers said: “We have a long and successful history with IFEX and NOW but the extra help from Liam this year has really made a difference, not just with the medals but with our trainees confidence in their own abilities. It is much appreciated.” NOW plan to build on the successful partnership with Liam and are keen to assist at the famed gourmet evenings hosted by The Stables.
NOW also thanked The Stables for sponsoring the costs of the ingredients for the IFEX entry.