Our Judges

The panel of judges for 2018, which includes MasterChef Finalist, Larkin Cen, Michelin-starred Birmingham chef, Glynn Purnell, and British Culinary Federation President Peter Griffiths MBE, will put the finalists through their paces.

Under the watchful eye of head judge Peter Griffiths MBE the cook-off finalists will be marked on their authenticity, skills and innovation:

Peter Griffiths MBE said about the 2016 competition: “This is the fourth year the competition has run. Last year we were incredibly impressed by the use of flavours, presentation and creativity in the finalists’ dishes. It has certainly set the standard for this year and we are very much looking forward to seeing what this year’s chefs have to offer.”

Peter Griffiths, MBE

Peter Griffiths, a founder member of the Midlands Association of Chefs, was Chairman for five years and President from 2002.

Now retired, he was executive chef at the Manor Hotel, Meriden until January 2008. Since 1992, he has held the position of Salon Director at Le Salon Culinaire International de Londres, Hotelympia and Hospitality, NEC Birmingham. He is a judge at numerous respected competitions and salons culinaire within the industry, both in the UK and abroad.

Peter was recently awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to the hospitality industry.

Glynn Purnell

Glynn is a Michelin star chef and restaurateur at Purnell's restaurant in Birmingham. Glynn Purnell started cooking professionally at the age of 14 after securing a work experience placement in a hotel.

He has successfully made the transition to television and has taken part in the Great British Menu, winning twice and then appearing as a mentor. He has previously featured on The Great British Food Revival and can be seen in the new series in the autumn. He appears at the BBC Good Food Show and is a regular guest chef host on BBC Saturday Kitchen.

Larkin Cen

Larkin Cen was a finalist in the 2013 series of MasterChef. After practicing as an HR Solicitor for 4 years, he decided to follow in the family’s footsteps and embark on his lifelong dream of being an entrepreneur. Having grown up in his parent’s Chinese takeaway, he noted that the Chinese food sector was too fragmented, the businesses lacked scalability and most importantly the food was outdated and generally unhealthy.

After his time of MasterChef, Larkin has established himself at the 5 star Celtic Manor Resort in Wales with restaurant Cen at Celtic Manor offering a deliciously different dining concept featuring an menu of fresh and contemporary Asian Cuisine. In October 2016 Larkin opened his new casual Asian diner called Woky Ko. They serve bao's, noodles and small plates all freshly cooked to order from a menu which reflects the freshness of Asian food. The casual and fun restaurant offers an open-kitchen dining room where guests can watch our "Wokstars" cook Asian street food to order.

Apply Now

If you’ve been inspired, entry for this year’s competition is open for a nationwide search to find and crown our Wing Yip Young Chef of the Year 2019.