Cook & Serve Challenge

Cook & Serve Challenge

Prepare, cook and serve a four-course meal for six covers, two covers presented to the judges and four covers served to diners at a laid table.  The team is to consist of one chef, one commis and one waiter.  

Food to be served in course order within 105 minutes, although this year there is no requirement for each course.

Water and two wines to be served.  A table and four chairs will be provided. Teams to provide own ingredients and equipment, descriptive menu including the wines to be provided.

The Cook & Serve competition takes place on Tuesday 26 March 2019.


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Front of House notes

  • You will be allocated a table and have 15-minutes to lay-up
  • You are to bring with you:
    • A table centre
    • A menu card showing the dishes to be served and the accompanying beverages
    • A tablecloth (size to be confirmed)
    • Appropriate crockery, cutlery, glassware, cruets, corkscrew
    • Linen napkins (you are to make two different napkin folds in the competition restaurant)
    • Wines and other beverages
    • Butter and bread/roll offering (this will be provided by Warwick University)
    • Any appropriate protective clothing
  • You are to wear a suitable front of house uniform
  • Your guests need to be seated before the starter is served

The main points on which you will be judged are:

  • Successful interaction between you and your diners, including your product knowledge
  • How well your wine choices complement the dishes your chefs are preparing
  • Your preparation of the table – including menu card, table centre, table laying
  • Making two different napkin folds
  • Safe and hygienic practices, including uniform and personal grooming
  • Food service skills and techniques
  • Preparation, presentation and service of wines and other beverages

Chef notes

You must bring with you all your own cooking utensils, crockery (remember you are using your own plates to present your meals), specialist items (e.g. ice cream makers etc), and all ingredients except the Whole Hake that will be provided on the day.

You will have 15 minutes to unpack and arrange your work station.

Teams to provide their own crockery.

Carriers, sauce boats etc may be used.

Specialist equipment being used is restricted to 2 items per team, this excludes: Stick Blenders, Mixers, Food Processors which are classified as standard equipment. Competitors will be penalised if they infringe the criteria regarding equipment.                    
Vac packer, Deep Fat Fryers will be available in the adjacent kitchen supplied by Warwick.

Each workstation will feature a 4-ring electric hob, oven and grill, 2 electricity points plus access to table top deep fat domestic fryer, vac packer and refrigeration and a freezer in an adjacent kitchen.


The menu to comprise of:

Starter - Vegetarian dish of competitors choice.
Main - Using Hake (supplied for you), specification will be provided before the competition.
Cheese Course - 2 British Artisan Cheeses with appropriate accompaniments
Petit Dessert - A mini dessert of competitors choice using Rhubarb to be served with/or pre coffee.
A selection of bread and/or rolls will be provided by the venue.

You may bring ready peeled and washed vegetables, and prepared pasta or pastry, but all cutting; shaping and further preparation of these must be done during the competition – these are some of the skills on which you will be judged.

You may bring prepared stocks.


The main points on which you will be judged are:

  • The number of individual culinary skills you demonstrate
  • Correct serving temperature of food and plates
  • Attractive presentation
  • Adhering to the competition criteria and timings
  • Clean, tidy and hygienic working practices
  • All food waste to be presented to judges

Further details of the dishes to be produced will be given when the closing date has passed.

Please note elements of your entry may be printed in the magazine and other promotional materials.

If you have any queries regarding your entry or booking please call the TUCO Competitions team on 0344 571 8208 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

We are now closed for entries.





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