A TyneMet student chef has won an international award at a major culinary event. 18 year old Luke Orwin from North Shields took on professional competitors from top hotels to win the 'best dessert' title at the New Zealand - United Kingdom Culinary Challenge in London.
The awards ceremony was held at the New Zealand High Commission with celebrity chef, Peter Gordon as one of the judges.
For the competition, Luke invented a dish of Manuka Honey Tart with Autumn Squash Curd and Raspberry Sorbet. It might seem a little strange using squash - which is normally used as a vegetable - in a dessert. Luke said: Manuka Honey is a classic New Zealand ingredient but very sweet. The squash curd, mixed with a little orange juice, helped balance the flavours. The judges really seemed impressed by that."
Despite being only 18, Luke has already won a series of awards. As well as his studies at TyneMet he also works at Brasserie Black Door at the Biscuit Factory in Newcastle and he'd like to go to London for work experience at Peter Gordon's restaurant, 'The Providores and Tapa Room.' Commenting on the entries for the competition, Peter said: "We received an overwhelming selection of high calibre entrants making it extremely hard to narrow down the choice of finalists.
TyneMet Principal, Jon Vincent said: "We are all delighted by Luke's achievements which are the result of his hard work and dedication and the support he receives from his teachers. This is just the latest in a series of awards for the department here at TyneMet this year."
As his prize, Luke was presented with a certificate, a bottle of bubbly and a trip to a ceremony in London next year, plus membership of the Craft Guild of Chefs, the organisers of the competition.
Luke is already busy thinking up his next culinary creation, something he says to win over the judges once again. But he says that, for now, his signature dish is definitely the Manuka Honey tart which won him so much acclaim.