Press Information 11th July 2011
WHAT A COME BACK!
What a comeback! Until she went to live in Cyprus for three years, Louise Heal had been the landlady of the Caledonia in Ashton-under-Lyne for two decades.
Then in January she was approached by the current tenants and went back to work in the pub’s kitchen. And now Louise, 47, has just become a prize winner in the ‘Have you got the bottle?’ Chef’s Challenge, run by Robinsons the Stockport-based independent family brewer, seeking the creation of exciting new dishes using the company’s beers as ingredients.
The competition was aimed at encouraging innovation across the brewer’s tenanted estate spanning Cumbria, Lancashire, Cheshire, North Wales and Derbyshire. Spearheaded by BBC Television’s Something for the Weekend celebrity chef Simon Rimmer and Robinson’s Catering Development Manager Christian Whittleworth, the challenge reached its climax as nine finalists prepared their dishes for the judges – including Simon and Christian – at the Derby Arms, Treales, near Kirkham in Lancashire.
“I’m absolutely over the moon,” Louise said of her joint third place. “It was a very tough competition and the standard of the winning dish was just stunning.”
The winner was a former head chef at a leading Lake District hotel and second place was claimed by a chef departing for Melbourne in the summer to work for Gordon Ramsay.
In a final that saw competing recipes matching Robinsons’ Dizzy Blonde ale with hake fillets and Chocolate Tom paired with roast loin of venison, Louise came up with beef braised in Robinson’s flavoured strong ale Ginger Tom, served with Bury Black pudding, champ, wilted pak choi and glazed carrots.
Louise won her own weight in Robinson’s beer and her recipe will be included – with those of Simon Rimmer, Christian Whittleworth and the other finalists – in a new cookery book and DVD due for publication in October.
Chris was delighted with the event, “The response to the Chef’s Challenge across our pub estate has been phenomenal and not only does this reflect our drive for innovation in beer and food matching, but also showcases the excellence of Chef’s in our pubs”
Proceeds from the sale of tickets to the final were donated by the Derby Arms to Derian House, a local children’s hospice.
Judges and Sponsors:
The judges were: Simon Rimmer, Paul Robinson, Rufus Carter (patchwork), Mark Loynton (villeroy and boch/taste north west). Robinson's would like to thank their Sponsors who were: Michael McDonald fruit and veg. C and G Wholesale Essential Cuisine Tibard Chefs ware Villeroy and Boch Patchwork Pate Taste North West Windsor Food Service
Photograph 1: Louise Heal from The Caledonia in Ashton-under-Lyne
Photograph 2: Beef braised in Ginger Tom
Photograph 3: Simon Rimmer and Christian Whittleworth with the finalists
For further information please contact Carmen.Byrne@frederic-robinson.co.uk or call 07814 394 965