Having toured the country, holding five regional Semi Finals, we now know the full line-up for the Pasta Chef of the Year Grand Final.

It’s been a long and fulfilling* series of events for our judging panel and there were, as always, a lot of tough decisions to be made. But we have our finalists. Each one will be making their dish live for the theatre audience at the Demo Theatre of the inaugural European Pizza and Pasta Show on Thursday 10 November 2016 at Olympia, London.

The competition takes the form of three categories and contestants are required to create a pasta dish in each, using one of the nominated pasta shapes in that category. 

The Finalists

Short Cut Pasta Category

Using Trivelli or Penne

  • Giovanni Pia from Amodo Mio with Penne Walnut and Rocket Pesto 
  • Darren Fenner from The Pumphouse Café with The Greek Pasta Salad 
  • Ylli Kolaveri from Il Michelangelo Restaurant and Penne Tricolore 
  • Katarina Willingham of Lemon & Soul Cookery School with Smoked Trout and Roasted Fennel Pasta Salad 

Long Cut Pasta Category

Using Linguine or Pappardelle

  • Rocco Monaco from Tony Macaroni with Pappardelle al Cinghiale 
  • Simon Wilkes of Planters Garden Centre and Pappardelle Nicolina 
  • Ylli Kolaveri from Il Michelangelo Restaurant with Linguine Il Michelangelo 
  • Katarina Willingham from Lemon & Soul Cookery School with Pork Stroganoff and Poppy Seed Papardelle 

Filled Pasta Category

Using Cappelletti Salmone or Pansotti Bufalo Ricotta

  • Riccardo Venditti from Tony Macaroni with Pansotti all'astice 
  • Darren Fenner of The Pumphouse Café with Pansotti Buffalo Ricotta with Crispy Pancetta 
  • Giuseppe Curci from Ponte Vecchio with Raviolo Partenopeo
  • Peter Puntrello from Sub XPress with Pansotti Bufalo Ricotta

In all categories, chefs must create a unique dish or an inventive re-imagining of a classic dish.

Judges are specifically looking to see how the dish showcases the pasta chosen along with the commercial viability, overall composition, flavour and appeal. 

For details on the full day's events at the European Pizza and Pasta Show, click here to find out what else is happening and get ready to be inspired!