Luke Selby takes the crown of the Roux Scholarship 2017!

Luke Selby was presented with the Roux Scholarship crown at the Roux Scholarship awards ceremony on Monday 10th April, after impressing the judging panel in what can only be explained as a jaw breaking final!

Luke, the Head Chef of Dabbous in London, beat five other brilliant Chefs in a fiercely contested final, which was held at Westminster Kingsway College on the day of Monday 10th.

The 26-year-old chef, who entered the competition for the first time this year, battled it out against Martin Carabott, from Luca Restaurant in London, Michael Cruickshank from Bohemia in Jersey, Scott Dineen, of Baxter Storey in London, Oliver Downey from Fera at Claridge’s in London and Matthew Whitfield from The Driftwood Hotel in Portscatho, Cornwall.

The challenge was to create a masterpiece dish from a recipe which was complete surprise. Half an hour before the start of the competition, the finalists were given the recipe and ingredients for a main dish, either classic or modern and given three hours to prepare and present it to the judges.

Each dish was superbly cooked and presented, but there could only be one winner. This year, it was Luke’s time to shine.

Commenting on the 34th national final, Michel Roux Jr said: “Regardless of being tricky, everyone stayed calm. Chefs’ instincts kicked in. The end results were good but all the finalists need to read the instructions. Having said that there were no cock-ups, every dish had plenty of positives. The recipe tested the knowledge of the classics which all good chefs should have.”

Alain Roux added: “Nobody panicked and all seemed comfortable to have a go. The six understood what we were looking for. For me, one of the challenges was the stuffing, which needed to be tasty and remain in the saddle of the hare. There were some issues of overcooking the hare, and some undercooked it too. It was ultimately a test of braising, so we wanted it a little rare or even slightly bloody, Luke’s dish was a clear winner.”

Luke says: “It was hard and I was really nervous but as soon as I got going I was fine. The cooking and seasoning went well. I’ve cooked hare before, but about 8 years ago! I’ve never cooked it this way but I had an idea of what they were looking for. It was an honour to cook for the judges; I wanted to impress them. They were encouraging, not intimidating at all.

I am very honoured to be part of the family, and the legacy that is the Roux Scholarship. I’d like to go to Japan for my stage. I’m not sure which restaurant yet but it’s so different there, they respect their produce so much.”

Luke was announced as the winner at a glittering awards ceremony at The Langham, London, in front of an audience of top chefs and prestigious guests from the world of hospitality.