Kirk Haworth, a vegan chef and co-founder and chef of London restaurant Plates, has won the Great British Menu series 19 ‘Champion of Champions’ 2024 title.

After making history by winning a fish round with a vegan dish, vegan chef Kirk Haworth has scooped the top accolade in the Great British Menu finals.

The first plant-based contestant ever to feature on the programme, Kirk made it through to the final banquet, where he took on fellow finalists in Paris in the tense final episode. Their challenge was to put on an Olympic-themed banquet for Team GB, ahead of the Games taking place in France’s capital city. After a previous creation of his won over judges, Kirk was tasked with creating the dessert to finish off the banquet. His winning dish, called ‘A Taste of Unity’, boasted a cacao gateaux with a sour cherry and toasted macadamia topping, served with coconut blossom ice cream, African pepper, and vanilla caramel sauce. Kirk incorporated the theme visually into his pudding by having each of the five rings represented by a flavour from the continent it represents.

Rave reviews

Kirk made it to the finals of the competition after he won his regional heat representing the North West. When Kirk served his dish at the final dessert round, it received rave reviews from judges, including guest judge Olympian Jessica Ennis-Hill, who was also full of praise for the special dish.

When guests were asked to score the banquet dishes of the evening, Kirk’s ‘Taste Of Unity’ dessert came out the winner, earning him the title of ‘Champion of Champions’ of the competition.

Discussing his win, he said: “I’ve dreamt of this moment since I was a little boy, so this is literally a dream come true for me.”

Meanwhile, Great British Menu judge, Tom Kerridge added: “That desert was a knockout 10 out of 10, I’m so proud of all of the chefs, but for Kirk I’m double pleased.”

‘A wild ride’

After his big win, Kirk took to Instagram to post about the competition and his experience competing in it. He wrote: “What a wild ride seriously so much work has gone into this whole competition very few will understand, every single course I wanted to be as good as the other & I didn’t stop until I thought that was achieved.

“There are so many people to thank from the wonderful @andioliver who is just the best human ever & looks after all the chefs, to the wonderful camera men & women who are such amazing people that work non stop to chase us chefs around the kitchen.

“Avril, Antonia & Ellen who looked after me & all my complex recipes to all the helpers behind the scenes that makes this show come together. The kitchen team run by @sammyjosquire who support us chefs so well – my northern diamond helper @rachelmstockley thank you we did it for the north, I told you so.

“My sister & bro in law support and back all my crazy ideas with full conviction and belief, thank you.“To my Dad & stepmum, my rock solid loyal friends & rest of my family who have seen me at my lowest through years of healing myself and stuck by me like a rock I love you all, this is yours as much as mine.”

Original source: https://www.veganfoodandliving.com

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