Announcing the contestants of the UK and Ireland Chocolate Masters competition

If you enjoy watching the great masters of chocolate shaping their fantastic creations in a competition that includes stunning showpieces, delicious desserts, beautiful bonbons and innovative concepts of food on the go, we have some great news for you!

The UK competition is planned to take place on 9th October this year, with the winner representing the
U.K. and Ireland at the World Chocolate Masters 2018 competition in Paris.

The UK and Ireland competition follows this year’s theme ‘Futropolis’ and is planned to take place at the prestigious Westminster Kingsway College in London.

The theme for the 2017/18 World Chocolate Masters – ‘Futropolis’ – is based on the growing phenomenon of megacities. By 2025, more than half of the world’s population is expected to be living in cities with 10 million inhabitants and more. From garden rooftops and vertical/underground farming, to 3D printing and edible food packaging, these megacities will challenge our ways of living, working and eating. Food will be influenced and inspired by art, science, design and technology. ‘Futropolis’ challenges chefs to put forward their creative visions around the future of chocolate gastronomy.

We are very happy to see the competition is so well received by the British and Irish pastry chefs and chocolatiers; we received more applications than any other year and the level of all applicants was really high. Sadly we had to limit the number by selecting only six of them (yes, we took one more compared to previous years) – who showed the highest technical and creative level. All selected pastry chefs and chocolatiers are extremely talented and well skilled, so we are expecting a really exciting competition.

Who are the great masters who will compete this year? Sarah Frankland, the Head Pastry Chef of  Pennyhill Park Hotel; Stephen Espouy, the Executive Pastry Chef of the Royal Yacht Britannia; Ian Mark, Chef of the Royal Air Force; Martin Chiffers of Chiffers International Pastry Consultancy; Quentin Bechard, the Chef de Partie of Yautcha Hakkasan, London and winner of the UK Junior Chocolate Masters 2015; and Barry Johnson, founder and chocolatier at The Cocoa Lab and Lecturer at The National Bakery School - London South Bank University.

Any bet who will be the UK and Ireland winner this year?

We are very much looking forward to seeing such great talent and skills in action and we are happy and proud that  there is so much passion, creativity and knowledge to showcase.

Robert Harrison, Sales Director Gourmet-Northern Europe, Barry Callebaut, comments: “The World Chocolate Masters is the only global competition dedicated to the individual creativity of chocolatiers and pastry chefs with a focus on chocolate. It is however, far more than a competition – it offers chefs a platform to experiment, to push boundaries and showcase their talent.  With individual freedom and personal vision at the heart of the competition, the World Chocolate Masters is an extremely challenging process, especially for those chefs who are used to being part of a brigade. As we’re sure previous UK and Ireland Chocolate Masters will testify however, the experience is a reward in itself. We wish all six finalists the very best of luck!”