Who are the regional finalists 2024?

As the regional finalists for the Roux Scholarship 2024 are announced, chairmen Alain Roux and Michel Roux Jr are delighted to reveal who will take part in the regional finals in the competition’s 40th anniversary year.

This year, 14 of the 18 finalists are new to the competition and they hail from establishments as far afield as Scotland and Cornwall.

The 18 chefs, and two reserves, were selected from their written recipes that had to use one short loin of free-range gilt pork, two fresh pork kidneys, crackling and sweet potatoes. They were submitted anonymously to the judges, who took part in the Recipe Judging day at The Waterside Inn on 21st February 2024. The 18 finalists will compete in two regional finals which will be held simultaneously on Thursday 7th March 2024 at University College Birmingham and University of West London, Ealing.

Michel Roux Jr: “The successful chefs sent in a really great set of recipes that all showcase some amazing skills and presentation in their dishes. It’s going to be another blockbuster of a year as we celebrate our 40th anniversary.”

Chairman Alain Roux: “It was great to see so many new candidates taking part in the competition. It shows how, despite the difficulties in today’s hospitality industry, so many young chefs are dedicated to improving their skills and gaining new experience by taking part in the Scholarship.”

Brian Turner CBE: “I suspect that many competitors didn’t have much experience matching sweet potato with pork and crackling, and it seemed that it threw a few people off, however the attempts were great. And it is great to see so many chefs representing restaurants from across the country.”

Angela Hartnett OBE: “We saw a lot of modern interpretations of things, lots of different spices, different herbs, processes in cooking in these recipes, which is great. You have to adhere to the classics because they underline everything, but it’s great to see they’d thought their recipes through so well.”

Emily Roux: “Judging the recipes was really interesting and it was difficult to whittle them down to choose the 18 finalists. We really have gone into a lot of detail in our discussions about what separates the recipes that have gone through to the regional finals, from those that haven’t. It’s also great to see chefs from across the competition’s age range – from age 22 to 29.”

Main picture: Roasted Loin of Gilt Pork – Sweet Potato, Salsa Verde, Apples & Cider by Jacob Reilly 

Competing in London

Yash Dadlani


Yash is sous chef at Kanishka by Atul Kochhar, in Mayfair, having previously worked at The King’s Head in Cirencester and Diablo in his home city of New Delhi, India. The judges are looking forward to tasting his recipe for Goan Pork Recheado at the London regional final.

Max Davies


Max Davies is from North Wales and previously worked at Aizle in Edinburgh and was a regional finalist last year, competing in Birmingham. He has recently moved to London for a new position at the Gordon Ramsay Group. He first decided to become a chef when his grandfather bought him his first set of knives and chef whites.

Oliver Dovey


This is the fifth time Oliver Dovey has competed in the regional finals. He has recently joined the brigade at Claridge’s as junior sous chef. He was first inspired to cook by his grandfather, who was also a chef. Oliver has previously worked at BaxterStorey, the House of Commons, at All Senses Gastronomy, Athens, Greece, and at the Shangri-La in the Shard, London.

Yiannis Mexis


This is the third time Yiannis, who is head chef at Hide, has competed in the regional finals. He planned to be a chef from a very young age and started as a pastry chef when he was still at school. He comes from Greece and has previously worked at The Ledbury and Elystan Street.

Ben Miller


Ben hails from Vancouver in Canada and came to the UK in January 2023. He works as junior sous at Alex Dilling at Hotel Café Royal, having previously worked at The Clove Club and as chef de cuisine at Tableau Bar Bistro in Vancouver. 

Megan Montibert


Megan works as senior chef de partie at L’Enclume and will soon be joining Roux Scholar Tom Barnes at his new restaurant Skof as sous chef. She fell in love with cooking at a young age, learning from her grandmothers and mother. She holds a degree in International Management and Modern Languages from the University of Bath.

Karol Ploch


Karol has worked at Kerridge’s Bar and Grill in London since 2019, climbing the ranks of the kitchen to sous chef. He previously worked at Story Restaurant and he hails from Poland. The judges are looking forward to tasting his dish: Roasted Pork Loin with Pork and Pistachio Farce, Sweet Potato Dauphine, Glazed Pork Kidney with Crackling Crumb, Mushroom Bon Bon and Peppercorn Sauce.

Jordan Randerson

Photo 23-02-2024, 10 52 04

Jordan is sous chef at The Elephant in Torquay, He will be competing in London and cooking his dish ‘Miso mustard glazed pork loin, with warm sweet potato, kidney and wild garlic salad, charred Wye Valley asparagus pork cream with a sweet potato and chardonnay foam’ while his Chef Simon Hulstone judges the Birmingham regional final.

Jacob Reilly


Jacob is currently working as demi chef de partie at Hélène Darroze at The Connaught, having worked at several high-end restaurants including Murano and Gauthier. He grew up in Kent, and has also staged in Bangkok. 

Darryl Shotlander


Darryl is our youngest finalist this year, but despite being just 22 he has gained some incredible experience including an internship at Osteria Francescana under Italy’s Master Chef, Massimo Bottura. He has worked at The Dysart Petersham under Roux Scholar Kenneth Culhane since November, and previously worked at Hide.  

Caer Timberlake


This is the second time Caer has reached the regional finals, having previously competed in 2021. He works at the Michelin-starred Restaurant 22 in Cambridge under former Roux Scholarship finalist Sam Carter. Caer says he has encouraged to cook from a young age by his family and started out washing up at the local pub aged 13.

Rebecca Tough


Rebecca works as sous chef at a Vacherin site at Ashurst, a law firm in Liverpool Street, where she has had the support of previous Roux Scholarship finalist Sabrina Gidda. She has previously worked with previous Roux Scholarship finalist Ruth Hansom at the Princess of Shoreditch and Pomonas.

Competing in Birmingham

Harrison Brockington


Harrison is head chef at Gather, in the Devon town of Totnes, which was recently featured on the Channel 4 TV programme Remarkable Places to Eat. He has worked at many of the best restaurants in Devon having trained at Exeter College.

Charlie d’Lima


Charlie works at Crocadon Farm under Roux Scholar Dan Cox where he has also been learning about growing and preserving. He has previously worked at Petrus in London as well as No. 6 in Padstow. During the Covid-19 pandemic, he cooked more than 10,000 meals for the NHS and won the Staff Canteen Food Hero Award.

Steven Halligan


Steven is chef patron at Restaurant Metamorphica in Haslingden, Lancashire and was hugely inspired in his first week of catering college at The Manchester College-Moston Campus when he found the cookbook of Eleven Madison Park in New York in the library – the dishes in the book were his first glimpse of gastronomic cooking and cites this as a pivotal moment in his life.

Adam Jones


Adam originally planned to pursue a career in law and gained his degree at the University of Leeds before changing my career path after graduation when he started to work in kitchens after graduating. His chef career began at the one star Michelin restaurant The Man Behind The Curtain before he went on to work in other AA and Michelin recognised establishments. He is now sous chef at Horto Restaurant

Evelina Stripeikyte


Evelina is chef de partie at The Glenturret Lalique restaurant, an establishment with a good track record in supporting chefs entering The Roux Scholarship, as has her previous establishment Restaurant Andrew Fairlie. She grew up in Lithuania where the forests and sprawling fields inspired her, with the support of her family, to become a chef.

Liam Smith


Liam is the chef at Restaurant Pine, in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, very close to where he grew up. He has previously worked in Scotland and spent five years at Gleneagles Hotel. Liam started his career as a kitchen porter in a French restaurant near his childhood home.


James Plowright

James is Head Chef at The Bugle in Hamble-le-Rice near Southampton, which is part of  The Ideal Collection.

Kian Puerto-Terron

Kian is senior chef de partie at Bulrush in Bristol, and has held positions as a number of excellent restaurants in the Westcountry, including Paul Ainsworth at No. 6.

Judging in London:
Alain Roux, Brian Turner CBE, André Garrett (2002 scholar), Rachel Humphrey, Clare Smyth MBE, Adam Smith MCA (2012 scholar).

Judging in Birmingham:
Michel Roux Jr, Angela Hartnett OBE, Sat Bains (1999 scholar), Simon Hulstone (2003 scholar).

Key facts:

  • The recipe applications are judged blind, so judges don’t know the applicants’ identity, place of work, or any other details other than the recipe.
  • Four finalists have competed in the finals before: Max Davies (2023), Oliver Dovey (2019, 2020/21, 2022, 2023), Yiannis Mexis (2022), Caer Timberlake (2020/2021).
  • There are three female chefs competing in the regional finals, all of whom are new to the competition. They are: Evelina Stripeikyte, Rebecca Tough and Megan Montibert.
  • The finalists come from establishments as far afield as Crieff and Cornwall and several have come from countries abroad to train and work in some of the UK’s best restaurants.
  • As well as looking at how enticing the dish was and the best use of ingredients, the judges were looking at costings of the ingredients. They also looked at how much food wastage there would be in some recipes and, in some cases this lost the candidate points.