Young pastry chefs from The Royal Household and The Wolseley in Mayfair are among the winners of the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts (RACA) Awards of Excellence 2019.

Four pastry chefs met the standard required during a 5.5 hour-long task in which they were given the theme of a christening. During this time, they had to produce 15 vegan bonbons, 15 Swiss rochers, 15 marshmallow lollipops, and a 20cm christening cake entremets-style that sat on top of a nougatine stand.

The judging panel was chaired by John Williams, executive chef at The Ritz London and chairman of the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts, and included Yolande Stanley from The Pastry Training Company and pastry consultant Sarah Hartnett.

The award is an examination, not a competition, meaning all or none of the candidates who take part could achieve it depending on their ability to attain the standard of excellence set by the judges. All those who successfully reach this standard, which is a score of 70% or more, win the AAE.

The four winners are:

  • Charles Parkins, Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons
  • Lillian Savage, The Royal Household
  • Ellie Smith, The Wolseley
  • Lydia Uglow, Pretty Sweet

Of these four, the candidate who scores the highest marks will be named as the RACA Young Pastry Chef 2019. This will be announced at a gala dinner at Claridge’s on Friday 12 July.

Winners were also revealed in kitchen and service categories.

RACA said the awards were the “most prestigious available to young professionals in the hospitality industry today, recognising and encouraging the most talented ambitious chefs, pastry chefs and waiters”. Since it began in 1983, more than 600 young professionals have achieved the award.