Young National Chef of the Year finalist- Aaron Middleton
The idea of being a chef was something Aaron had considered throughout his childhood, but there was only one place in the area that he could find a decent, flavoursome meal and that was at his Nan’s house. That was until Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons veteran, Stephan Bulmer opened Brook Hall Cookery School in his home-town of Winslow. In 2010, five days after leaving school, a young and very naive Winslow boy was pushed into the deep end of hard work and attention to detail. However, within days he was in love.
In January 2012, natural progression led Aaron to the kitchens of Le Manoir where he spent the next five years training under Gary Jones and his immensely talented senior team.
Aaron described his time working under Brett Graham and Greg Austin at The Ledbury to have inspired him the most in his career so far saying “The hard work, passion and dedication that goes into every single day of that restaurant is second to none. The team I was lucky enough to cook alongside were some of the most talented and good-natured chefs I’ve ever met.” These days Aaron can be found working in the kitchens of Hide Above in Mayfair.
The Young National Chef of the Year competition was an opportunity for Aaron to see how far he had come as a chef and to push himself out of the comfort zone of everyday kitchen life. Winning The Young National Chef of the Year Final would be an amazing achievement for Aaron and an incredible way to receive recognition for his hard work and progress so far.
After finding out he was in the YNCOTY final, the first person Aaron called was his head chef and good friend, Luke Selby who is no stranger to the competition having won both the young and senior titles. He celebrated the news over a beer with his good friends and girlfriend, Gabby.
The three words that most describe Aaron’s style of cooking are bold, simple and refined.