Hotel, Restaurant and Catering preview

Hotel, Restaurant and Catering preview

HRC, which was formerly Hotelympia, returns to London, offering no less than four shows across three days…

Registration is now open for the Hotel, Restaurant & Catering (HRC) show. Formerly Hotelympia, it represents the UK’s largest and most prestigious event for the hospitality and foodservice industry, taking place at ExCeL London from 3rd to 5th March 2020.

With four shows in one, HRC is the definitive event for all sectors of the hospitality and foodservice industry. Visitors can take in The Foodservice Show, The Professional Kitchen Show, The Interiors and Tabletop Show and The Hospitality Tech Show for three days of unrivalled sourcing and networking opportunities. It will welcome 21,000 hospitality and foodservice professionals and 600 suppliers, showcasing ground-breaking products from big brands to innovative start-ups in catering equipment, food, drink, technology, interior design and tabletop solutions.

To cater to the industries thirst for knowledge, HRC will tackle key topics including sustainability, staff retention, health and wellbeing, alternative revenue streams, restaurant design, branding, and the Great British drinks movement. This will be delivered through over 80 free-to-attend talks and workshops, live cooking demonstrations, food and drink tastings and trend trails.

International Salon Culinaire
HRC will host the UK’s most prestigious chef competition, International Salon Culinaire, comprising 1,000 chefs competing across four categories – Live Theatre, Skills Theatre, Sugar Craft and Salon Display. The competition is an investment by event organiser Montgomery Events to showcase the country’s most exciting up-and-coming chefs.

It delivers a platform for fresh talent to show off their skills to a room full of peers and an engaged audience at the show and on social media. The competition has something for everyone, whether they are a novice or a seasoned competitor, and is judged by over 70 of the UK’s most esteemed industry chefs, all of whom are members of partner associations – The Craft Guild of Chefs, The British Culinary Federation, The Royal Academy of Culinary Arts and The Association of Pastry Chefs.

The Live Theatre is a contemporary, expertly designed theatre space with 10 adjacent workstations. All fully-equipped with state-of-the-art energy-efficient professional kitchen equipment supplied by members of The Catering Equipment Suppliers Association, the stations are set in a semi-amphitheatre style to let chefs keep a close eye on the competition and give the audience a great view of all the action. The space will feature back-to-back hot live classes throughout the three days of the event.

Chef director Steve Munkley, executive chef at The Royal Garden Hotel and vice president of The Craft Guild of Chefs, will be curating the programme of challenging and exciting competitions, all requiring skills, techniques and ingredients prominent in today’s modern-day professional kitchen. Some new exciting classes have been added to the program and some others have been brought back, with the competitions including The Mystery Basket Grand prix sponsored by Bidfood, The Tilda Chef Team of the Year 2020, The Major Series Final 2020 in association with The Craft Guild of Chefs, The Master Chefs of Great Britain Challenge, and The Craft Guild of Chef’s National Chef Team of the Year 2020 in association with MSK.

Salon Display
Sure to be one of the most eye-catching elements of the event, the Salon Display, sponsored by Compass Group, will be a showcase of static culinary creations and incredible skill from senior, junior, and student chefs. The 2020 Salon Display will see a welcome return for the Table of Honour, where some International Gold winning competitors will show off their medal-winning exhibits for all to view.
Another highlight will be the dedicated sugar-craft section, which will feature its own programme of competitions, including showpieces, floral sugar-craft arrangements, wedding cakes, novelty cakes and more. If you have a sharp eye for the most Instagrammable food in the country, this isn’t one to miss.

Nick Vadis, culinary director of Compass Group, said: “The Salon Culinaire has provided our chefs with an opportunity to demonstrate the breadth of talent and skills being developed within our business. It’s excellent to see our chefs come away with an array of awards, and I’m always extremely proud of every chef that takes part in the competition.”

The Skills Theatre
The Skills Theatre, which is also sponsored by Compass Group and supported by World Skills UK, is dedicated to chefs at the start of their careers. Through a range of cold live competitions (which include butchery, fishmongery and knife rounds), young chefs will get to practise some of the essential skills that will become crucial as they progress through their careers. With both kitchen and service classes, colleges the length and breadth of the country will be fighting for spaces in this salon, to test the abilities of their students and apprentices. As an enrichment to their teaching programs, this shows commitment from the college lecturers in going the extra mile for the betterment of their young chefs.

For the first time, specialist ingredients partner MSK Ingredients will be providing an exclusive training day at its offices for the college or institution that accumulates the most medal points on the Skills Theatre across the three days. Student, trainee or apprentice chefs undergoing a recognised catering qualification will all be competing. Danny Leung, head chef for Lexington Catering, says that attending Salon Culinaire is always “a rubberstamped date in the diary”, so get it into your diary today.

Speaking about the whole event, Ronda Annesley, event manager for HRC, said: “Our purpose is to deliver an outstanding event that educates and showcases the latest innovations for foodservice and hospitality professionals. We have worked tirelessly to understand the solutions to the industry’s challenges, and HRC is determined to provide the answers to help businesses make better decisions for the year ahead.”