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Meet the people: Emma Wombwell, Merseyside Young Chef of the Year

Emma, 23, was announced the winner in the Mersey quest to find a top young chef, at the Malmaison last weekend. She will now compete for the North West Fine Food regional title

Published on September 18th 2007.


Meet the people: Emma Wombwell, Merseyside Young Chef of the Year

Where do you work? The Cowshed Restaurant, at the Wheatsheaf, in Raby, on the Wirral. I'm the sous chef at the moment.

How long have you been in this game then? I've been at the Cowshed for six months.

Who taught you to cook? Dad and Mum are both keen cooks, but I really became interested in cooking when working at the Cowshed while I was still at school. I started there as a waitress and then went to work in the kitchen as a kitchen porter, and with encouragement from the chef started to get involved in prepping and cooking.

What made you want to be a chef? I had planned to join the police when I left school, but unfortunately, after disappointing A level results, I decided to give this a go. I love food and I love cooking,

Who do you draw inspiration from – famous or otherwise?When I was studying in Plymouth, I spent time on a work placement in a restaurant in La Rochelle, under head chef Joel Coulon and, after college, worked in Chloe's in Plymouth under head chef Didier Franchet, both of whom were a huge inspiration. I'm also inspired a lot by Gordon Ramsey and Marco Pierre White – and I've been glued to Hell’s Kitchen,

What are your favourite local ingredients?Wild local game, which is a big inspiration for the menu at the Cowshed.

What is your cooking style?Being honest to the produce and using the best possible local ingredients cooked simply but well.

What do you do outside the kitchen?Horse riding. Lots of it!

Do you one day want to open your own restaurant?You bet!

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