The Academy of Food & Wine Service (AFWS) has announced its nine semi-finalists for this year's UK Restaurant Manager of the Year awards.
Each from well-known brands and restaurant groups around the UK, the nine restaurant managers will now go through to the semi-finals, which will include an interview with experts, plus a series of tests on their knowledge.
Set to be held at the beginning of October, the contest also requires them to submit a business proposal to a judging panel. The judges will also visit each finalist in their place of work, spending time looking at service standards and training, for the first time in the competition's six-year history.
The winner will then be announced at a gala dinner awards ceremony at London's Roof Gardens on 17 November 2014, for which tickets are on public sale on the AFSW website. [http://www.afws.co.uk/]
The competition seeks to reward the best managers in the foodservice sector, including those from fine-dining restaurants, gastropubs, high-street groups, hotels restaurants, or those run by foodservice caterers.
AFWS operations director Sheila Fraser-Whyte said: "Each candidate will have different challenges according to his or her area of work and we felt it was important to see how they dealt with typical issues that arise in their own establishments."
Established in 1988, the AFWS is the professional body for front-of-house service, and seeks to improve the status and raise awareness of careers in hospitality as a viable choice. It also offers advice and training to anyone considering or pursuing a career as a sommelier, waiter, or bar or restaurant manager.
FULL LIST OF SEMI-FINALISTS
Amie Duncan, the Butchershop Bar & Grill, Glasgow
Daniel Harrison, De Vere Village Urban Resorts, Wirral
Dace Lace, Bat Globe House, London WC2
Karen Lee, the Cavendish Hotel, London SW1
Sunnil Panjabi, the Punch Tavern, London EC4
Ian Sturrock, the Arts Club, London W1
Amelia Thornhill, the Rockingham Arms, Hants
Alper Zan, Café Rouge, Ellesmere Port