Having studied for her Level 1 and 2 in Professional Cookery in her home city of Cambridge, Alice came to West Kent College in 2015 to complete her Level 3 qualification, enrolling when she was 19. She is now 21 and in her 3rd year of studying a BA (Hons) in Professional Culinary Arts at the University of Derby.
Alice’s culinary prowess was clear from an early age. She won the junior category of the Kent Young Chef Awards in 2009, when she was 12 years old, with her dish of Romney Marsh lamb with chocolate peppermint sauce. She also entered the competition in 2010 and again in 2011, where she won the senior category with a dish of Tea-smoked quail, quail’s egg pasta, celeriac puree, purple sprouting broccoli, braised lentils and an apricot and ginger glaze.
Her aspiration is to teach cooking, the seeds of which were sown at West Kent: “One of my favourite aspects of the course at West Kent was the supervisory element, helping other students, which ultimately led to the desire for my career. I’m at the end of my degree and will then begin my PGCE specialising in teaching people over 16 with special needs.”
Studying modules such as food science and nutrition as part of her programme at Derby, and honing her skills at the Devonshire Dome in Buxton, she adds: “My final year is focused on product development and market research for my chosen topic: the use of fresh and dried seaweed from the local British coastline. It’s a fascinating degree course, where I get to learn about the anthropology of food, how our bodies react to it, and the psychology around it.”
We were delighted to welcome Alice back to the college in November 2018, this time as a judge at the Kent Young Chef competition, which took place in The Artisan.
And her favourite restaurant? (other than the Artisan, obviously!): “Definitely La Gavroche, which I had the opportunity to visit whilst studying at West Kent. Michel Roux Jnr is a big inspiration to me, as is Marcus Wareing.”