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The Nestlé Professional Toque d’Or trophy has gone to Westminster Kingsway College for the third time.

The team of three front and back of house students claimed their place in Toque d’Or history at an awards dinner held at London’s Dorchester Hotel, where Nestlé Professional managing director, George Vezza, described the finalist teams as “inspirational”.

This year, the judges were tasked with assessing the teams on their practical and theoretical knowledge and skill, and also on their ability to think on their feet, back each other up as a team and improvise solutions when necessary.

In the end the judging panel, which included celebrity chef and head of judges James Tanner and former lecturer Andy Stacey, picked Westminster Kingsway for their “overall professionalism, wonderful flexibility, highly developed skillsets and their clear passion for the industry”. 

Tanner added: “It takes a special kind of person to commit to a career in hospitality – it can be tough at times and to succeed, future chefs and managers must be able to work under pressure yet still produce a smile at the end of their shift.

“These skills are as important as being passionate about cooking and service and reflect the best of the best delivering the whole package.  Every team performed incredibly – you’d never have known that some were just 18 or only had one or two years of experience under their belts – but in the end Westminster Kingsway proved they really had what it takes to go the whole way.  We are all sure that they can look forward to very bright futures.”