CATERING students served-up a stunning menu to impress top table guests and earn them a five star rating to win the Battle of the North West – Inter College Cook and Serve Competition.

Aspiring chefs and front of house staff from St Helens College took the honours at St George’s Hall, Liverpool, as part of the Business of Food & Drink Festival.

The St Helens College catering students prepared a delicious set menu to highlight their culinary skills using specially selected North West produce.

Student chefs Dean Evans, Callum Hurle, Stephanie Benham, Lucy Allcock and Amii Edgar produced a fantastic five course menu which included an amuse bouche of duck egg custard with bacon and toast soldiers, grilled hake starter, sirloin of beef main, strawberry tart dessert and a selection of petit fours.

Hospitality students Stephanie Birchall, Sophie King, Miranda James and Katie Donnelly were judged from the way the tables were dressed and laid to the way they interacted with guests, served the food and drink and answered questions.

Delighted team leader Stephanie Birchall said: “First place makes it worth all the time and effort. Preparing for the competition has changed my perspective and I feel like it has given me that extra drive to aim even higher.

“We really came together as a team and we are very proud to represent St Helens.”

Judges included Paul Askew, chef at The London Carriage Works Restaurant and Food and Beverage Director for Hope Street Hotel, and John Hollywood, Restaurant Consultant at the UK’s tallest restaurant, Panoramic in Liverpool.

Praising the students College principal Jette Burford said “The students and their tutors have worked tremendously hard.

“It is a great triumph for St Helens – we really do have lots of talented youngsters.”