Northern talent could triumph at London restaurant awards

A number of chefs from Confidentials' Top 100 restaurants in the North have made it onto the shortlist for the 12th annual National Restaurant Awards - and we’re rooting for them.

The Awards, sponsored by Estrella Damm, are The Oscars (maybe The Baftas) of the restaurant world and voted for by an ‘academy’ of culinary professionals including chefs, restaurant owners, food critics and other knowledgable types.

On the night of the event - held at the Hurlingham Club in Fulham - a list of the best 100 restaurants in the UK will be revealed, as well as a cluster of individual gongs dished out to star players.

Mark Birchall Pr 6
Moor Hall's March Birchall is up for 'Chef’s Chef of the Year'

Chorley-born Mark Birchall of the sublime, two Michelin-starred Moor Hall in Aughton is nominated for the ‘Chef’s Chef of the Year’ award, voted for by his peers and the only chef outside London on the list.

Simon Shaw, chef patron of top drawer Manchester small plates establishments, El Gato Negro and Canto, is up for 'Restaurateur of the Year' - once again the only restaurateur outside the big smoke to make the cut.

180516 Canto Simon Shaw Chef Carlos Gomes And Simon Shaw From Canto Restaurant Manchester Landscape Format 6720 X 4480
El Gato Negro's Simon Shaw (right) is up for 'Restaurateur of the Year'

Finally, a few of our own favourites are up for the 'Chef to Watch' award which prophesies a great year ahead for one up 'n' comer.

Northern nominees include dark horse Alasdair Brooke-Taylor from an unassuming pub producing astounding food, The Moorcock Inn, in Sowerby Bridge; experimental whizz Neil Bentinck of world fusion small plates dining room Skosh in York; Luke French, who produces Nordic-inspired fine dining in a restaurant housed in a shipping container, Joro, in Sheffield, and Simon Martin of Scandinavian influenced 'wild dining' adventure Mana in Ancoats.

Restaurants from the North West that made last year’s top 100 list included Moor Hall (Aughton), Freemasons at Wiswell, Wreckfish (Liverpool), Hispi (Manchester), The Parker’s Arms (Lancashire), Where The Light Gets In (Stockport) and Northcote (Lancashire)

No chefs from up north took home any of the special individual awards last year though, so let's hope the Northerners bring it home in 2019. 

This year's bash takes place on June 10th.