London Southbank Bakery College lecturer Barry Johnson has won the UK and Irish national selection of the World Chocolate Masters competition.

Johnson beat off competition from five other chocolatiers and pastry chefs, and will represent the UK and Ireland during the international final in Paris from October next year.

Each competitor had a day to create and present three assignments to a professional judging panel.

The 2018 theme, Futropolis, challenged contestants to create a chocolate showpiece called ‘The Futropolitan’, a hybrid pastry reflecting ‘Fresh flavours of Futropolis’ and a ‘Chocolate Snack to Go’.

In each of the assignments, the contestants had to integrate the theme with shape, design, presentation and a selection of ingredients.

Judges said Johnson’s creations showcased an “outstanding sense of balanced flavours and imaginative interpretation of the theme”.

“Barry maintained a consistently high standard throughout the competition, showing great analysis of the Futropolis concept. He captured the imagination of all of the judges,” said Gary Hunter, head of the judging panel.

The national selection process was livestreamed via Facebook, with more than a million viewers watching the day’s event unfold.

 The World Chocolate Masters began in January 2017 with national selections being held in 21 countries across the world between January 2017 and January 2018.