Winner of the Roux Scholarship 2018 Martin Carabott has completed his stage at Eleven Madison Park in New York, USA. The three-month placement, with all expenses paid, is the star prize of the competition, with winners able to choose any Michelin star kitchen in world.
Martin’s choice was Eleven Madison Park, one of the world’s most revered restaurants; it has held three Michelin stars since 2011 and was named number one in the World’s Best Restaurant guide in 2017. It has been owned by Chef Daniel Humm and Restaurateur Will Guidara since 2011 and it is set in an Art Deco building overlooking Madison Square Park, one of Manhattan’s most beautiful green spaces.
Martin said: “I chose to stage at Eleven Madison Park primarily because I love the food they do there because it is technically perfect, yet looks simple and sharp. I have admired the evolution of the food and the identity of the restaurant, and how it became cleaner and more refined.”
During his stage, Martin began with helping out in the kitchen before progressing quickly to training on different sections, under the guidance of Chef de Cuisine Brian Lockwood. Martin devised a dish for the restaurant’s seasonal ‘cook battle’ competition. Chef Lockwood said: “During his time at Eleven Madison Park, Martin was able to spend time with chefs working on four different stations in the kitchen. He also participated in our quarterly cook battle competition, which really helps drive our collaborative creativity. He placed second out of 50 cooks which is a huge honour in itself. He worked really hard, was super-focused and will no doubt make an impact in our industry in the coming years.”
Martin said: “I was thrown in the deep end, which I really enjoyed and I was embraced as one of the team.
To do well on four different sections in one of the best restaurants in the world is a real boost for me. Even though it was tough, I am happy I lived up to the reputation of the Roux Scholarship and its scholars, learning a ton of techniques along the way. I am returning to the UK a much better chef than when I arrived!” In addition to this, and his other prestigious prizes, Martin will receive support and encouragement from his fellow scholars and the Roux Family for the rest of his career. He says: “Even now, as I start my life as a Roux Scholar, I see what amazing opportunities the Roux Scholarship offers chefs my age.”
Chairman Alain Roux is delighted Martin was able to fulfill his dream of working at Eleven Madison Park thanks to the Roux Scholarship: “Understandably, there is a waiting list not only to go and eat there but also to work there! So, for Martin to be accepted to do his winning three-month stage there is truly special.”
Fellow chairman Michel Roux Jr said: “I am so happy Martin has had such a fantastic experience at Eleven Madison Park for his three-month stage. Daniel Humm is a true master of his craft often using only two or three ingredients to mind blowing effect. Coupled with living in New York, one of the world’s gastronomic capitals, he has had a once-in-a-lifetime, enriching experience.”