Dining Out 3 minutes 11 March 2021

Meet the MICHELIN Young Chef Award Winners

Last year was extremely tough for the restaurant industry and chefs around the world, but MICHELIN is very happy to bestow the Michelin Young Chef Award on nine talented young chefs around the world, from Thailand to Germany.

Young Chef Award Restaurants Michelin Star

Korea: Joseph Lidgerwood

Tasmanian chef Joseph Lidgerwood has been running the kitchen at EVETT since 2018 after previously working in London and Hong Kong. He was instantly captivated by the vast variety of ingredients he found in South Korea. Lidgerwood’s promise is to “make the familiar unfamiliar” and to provide culinary discoveries even to local gourmets. The restaurant got its first star in MICHELIN Guide Seoul 2020 for its inventive offering.

© EVETT
© EVETT

France: Mory Sacko and Coline Faulquier 

In 2021, MICHELIN Guide is thrilled to honor two young, talented individuals with the Young Chef Award presented by Blancpain. One winner is 28-year-old Mory Sacko, chef-owner of One MICHELIN Star MoSuKe in Paris. He has already made a name for himself with a highly accomplished style of cuisine combining Central and West African influences — Sacko is of Senegalese and Malian origin — with a distinctively Japanese touch, on a foundation of French culinary techniques. Another is 31-year-old Coline Faulquier, whose Marseille restaurant Signature also received its first MICHELIN star this year. She is known for constantly designing creative, refined dishes made with exquisitely selected ingredients.

© Clément Sirdey
© Clément Sirdey

Thailand: Sujira “Aom” Pongmorn

Sujira “Aom” Pongmorn, Chef de Cuisine of Saawaan (Bangkok), was born into a family of cooks and grew up around food and professional cooking. Following her education at the School of The Oriental Hotel Apprenticeship Program (OHAP) at the Mandarin Oriental Bangkok, she worked with a number of Michelin chefs, including Juan Amador and Thomas Keller, during their guest appearances at Le Normandie. She continued her fine-dining experience at Sra Bua by Kiin Kiin at the Siam Kempinski Hotel Bangkok, furthering her with molecular cooking techniques. In 2016, Aom and restaurateur Frederic Meyer opened Baan Phadthai, which has been a Bib Gourmand since 2018 and is Pongmorn’s personal tribute to Thai cuisine.

© Saawaan
© Saawaan

UK and Ireland: Kray Treadwell

The winner of the Young Chef of the Year Award is Kray Treadwell of 670 Grams in Birmingham. The sign outside labels the restaurant 'Modern Abstract Fine Dining' and there’s no doubt that Treadwell's cooking is highly original, playful, and creative. The 10-course tasting menu changes daily, delivering some intriguing flavour combinations. Contrasts of texture and temperature are a recurrent theme. Dishes enjoyed by the Michelin Inspectors include ‘lamb + dressed + mutton’, which features rich, crispy lamb neck on a bed of pickled cabbage, and ‘lemon curd + burnt white chocolate + bacon’, an intriguing dessert in which the bacon adds some crunch and a welcome salinity.

670 Grams © Michelin
670 Grams © Michelin

Belgium & Luxembourg: Manon Schenck

The warm brown colour scheme of Manon Schenck’s establishment, La Table de Manon, is stylish. A lobster tanks takes pride of place indoors, which is no coincidence. The Alsace-born chef has a weakness for lobster, which she happily serves with fish and meat, to the delight of our tastebuds. Her food is rich in bold touches (Breton lobster medallion, crushed raspberries, vinegar cabbage and ginger; market fish, grilled white asparagus, seaweed dauphine and yuzu; inverted pavlova, meringue, Elsanta strawberries and rose whipped cream).

© Manon Schenck
© Manon Schenck

Switzerland: Marie Robert

Marie Robert, chef/co-owner Le Café Suisse, received the MICHELIN Young Chef Award in the 2020 Switzerland MICHELIN Guide. Deeply passionate and committed, Marie delivers quite feminine, sometimes cheeky, modern and very creative cuisine which is detailed yet never loses sight of the products. She and her entirely female brigade concoct an excellent label red salmon from Scotland in a green and yellow dress, Aquitaine caviar and Vodka pearls and tasty snail balls in parsley, ham from frogs' legs, soft garlic mousseline. Do you dare opt for the restaurant’s surprise menu, which the regulars adore ? As fun as it is tasty: a guaranteed trip to gastronomic land.

© Marie Robert
© Marie Robert

Guangzhou: Situ Jianquan

Last year, the 2020 MICHELIN Young Chef Award went to Chef Situ Jianquan from Lingnan House, whose rich and diverse work experience included roles at a renowned Cantonese food catering business and a Cantonese restaurant at a top-shelf hotel in Guangzhou, before he headed to the kitchens of Lingnan House. Michelin Inspectors praised his skillful techniques, as well as his picture-perfect presentation and developing new recipes.

© Lingnan House
© Lingnan House

Italy: Antonio Ziantoni

Ziantoni’s first solo adventure, at Zia, comes after three training experiences in high-level institutions in France, the UK, and Rome. His dedication and talent has impressed the most sensitive palates. "I try to work with patience, humility, and conscience,” he says. “[These are] three qualities that I consider essential for any young person who wishes to undertake this type of professional course.”
In the enchanting setting of Trastevere, Zia, which Ziantoni runs with his partner Ida Proietti, stands out for its elegance, professionalism and, above all, its cuisine. The focus is on seasonal Italian produce, with influences from France and further afield, and showcases dishes that demonstrate expert techniques, precision and seemingly unstoppable research.

© Antonio Ziantoni / Zia
© Antonio Ziantoni / Zia

Germany: Philipp Stein

Stein’s Traube has been in Philipp Stein’s family for six generations, and now the 31-year-old is at the helm. There is no question that he can cook, and you’ll find neither show nor gimmicks in his dishes. What may seem simple at first glance is very complex in taste and harmony, but always accessible. The cooking is done with restrained elegance and the necessary portion of courage in the right places. We particularly appreciated tataki of veal, with king oyster mushrooms, mushroom dashi, prune, and seaweed ; sole with beans, tomatoes, chives, Pata Negra, and brown butter; and macadamia cake with Tasmanian pepper, caramelized banana cream, and coconut sorbet.

© Phillip Stein/Stein's Traube
© Phillip Stein/Stein's Traube

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