Shortlisted for the Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award – which is one of 14 categories in the awards which are widely recognised as the ‘Oscars’ of the fish and chip industry – these 10 up-and-coming young friers will now batter it out with hopes of being crowned the UK’s ‘best young fish frier’: Peter Calvert of Mister C’s in Selby, North Yorkshire; Katie Gray, Iona Wilson and Alex Walker of Low’s Traditional Fish & Chips in Westhill, Aberdeenshire; Sam Parry of Top Chippy in Conwy, North Wales; Magda Ganea of Real Food Café in Tyndrum, Stirling; Brett Coulton of Black’s Finest Fish & Chips in Halton, Lancashire; Jason Wales of Scrap Box in York; Charlie Collins of Frydales in Leicester; and Andy Hillier of Harbourside Fish & Chips in Plymouth.
The Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award was developed to encourage the fish and chip industry’s younger generation* to nurture and expand their skills to become expert friers and positive role models for the next generation.
To get to this stage and secure a place in the coveted shortlist, the young friers have faced a rigorous judging process, undergoing exam questionnaires and in-depth telephone interviews conducted by senior industry experts.
Over the coming weeks, the 10 semi-finalists will be subjected to further appraisal as they receive a skills based assessment - which includes chipping potatoes, making batter, frying fish - and undergo a personal interview during a comprehensive judging day at the National Federation of Fish Friers (NFFF) Training School in Leeds, West Yorkshire. This stage of judging will whittle down the shortlist to five finalists.
Kelvin Lee, Managing Director of Drywite Ltd, said: “The Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award has attracted an exceptionally high standard of entries again this year, making the judges’ job of whittling it down to 10 semi-finalists very difficult. It’s great to see so many young friers with a real passion for the industry and I am confident that the future of fish and chips is safe in their hands.”
Marcus Coleman, Chief Executive at Seafish, added: “For the last 30 years, The National Fish & Chip Awards have showcased the very best of what the UK fish and chip industry has to offer, and the 2018 Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award semi-finalists certainly do not disappoint.
“Reaching the top 10 in a UK-wide competition is no mean feat - they should be extremely proud of themselves for making it this far. I wish them the best of luck in the next stage of the competition and take great comfort that our industry is going to be handed down to such talented and passionate individuals.”
The winner of the Drywite Young Fish Frier of the Year Award will be announced at The National Fish & Chip Awards’ 30th anniversary ceremony in London on 25 January 2018.