Since being crowned Scottish Junior Chef of the Year 2021 almost six months ago, Fraser Cameron, of The Globe Inn in Dumfries, has been busy sharpening his skills in the kitchens of some of London’s finest dining establishments.
Back in October 2021, the best of Scotland’s young culinary talent was brought together at the City of Glasgow College for the final of a competition hosted by the Federation of Chefs. Under timed conditions and the scrutiny of several judges, contestants were required to produce a three-course meal for four covers, with a mandatory Scotch Lamb main course.
Committed to supporting the next generation at all levels of the red meat supply chain, from livestock farmers to butchers and chefs, Quality Meat Scotland (QMS) proudly sponsored the event, providing racks of lamb for all finalists to get creative with. Whilst his starter and dessert were show-stoppers in their own right, it was perhaps Fraser’s plat principal of ‘Rack and Loin of Scotch Lamb, Carrot and Ginger Puree, Boudin Noir, Soy, Honey and Yuzu Juice’ that allowed him to come out on top.
As well as taking home the title, Fraser won a full set of butchery knives from Starretts, enjoyed a butchery demo day at Campbells Prime Meats and had the privilege of experiencing hands-on placements at London restaurants, Michelin starred Murano, and The French House.
Commenting on his experience at Murano, Fraser said: “The restaurant is filled with passionate people who are all striving for perfection; not only with the dishes they prepare, but in every aspect of service. It was inspiring to be in an environment so focused on detail, and I was so grateful that everyone in the kitchen took the time to explain the different elements and preparation required for each dish.”
Although a different style of restaurant in its food and service style, Fraser also made the most of his time at The French House. “It was incredible to work with Chef Neil Borthwick with his sheer knowledge for cooking and flavours, and his ability to impart some of this to me.
“I left London with many recipes, tips, ideas, contacts, and friends. I would like to thank everyone at Murano and The French House for being so welcoming and allowing my passion for fine food to grow.”
Yet the experience was not solely focused on the finished product, as Fraser was inspired to learn more about Scotland’s finest ingredients, and the production behind them. Speaking on the three world class brands: Scotch Beef PGI, Scotch Lamb PGI and Specially Selected Pork, Fraser commented:
“Whilst the experience I was able to gain during my time at both Murano and The French House was invaluable, so too was the wealth of industry knowledge I was able to absorb from speaking with Gordon Newlands, the Brands Development Manager at QMS. Scottish chefs are renowned globally for their incredible skills and the fantastic larder at their fingertips, so it was great to find out more about the high-welfare standards, provenance, and sustainability credentials of Scottish red meat, and why this makes it such an attractive product.”
Gordon Newlands said: “We were delighted to sponsor the Scottish Young Chef of the Year competition and get young culinary talent working with, and enjoying, Scotch lamb.
There are countless exciting opportunities to learn and thrive within the hospitality industry currently, and I would encourage any youngster to explore it as an option.”
With his newly acquired skills and drive for success, Fraser is now back in Dumfries and learning from his mentor Jonathan Brett, Head Chef at The Globe Inn, demonstrating a prime example of what can be achieved through sheer dedication to a craft.
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