Borthwick Castle's Derek makes Chef of the Year final

A MENU that showcased the UK's finest seasonal larder has impressed judges at the National Chef of the Year Awards so much that its creator, chef Derek Johnstone, has won his way through to the finals of the Awards, run by The Craft Guild of Chefs.

Thursday, 21st June 2018, 3:42 pm
Updated Thursday, 21st June 2018, 3:43 pm
Chef Derek Johnstone, Borthwick Castle's Head Chef

Johnstone, chef at Borthwick Castle, passion for classic cuisine incorporating modern cooking techniques is well known and has secured Borthwick Castle’s reputation for fine dining.

Johnstone’s winning menu started with Isle of Wight Tomatoes with lovage pesto, served with Ticklemore goat’s cheese and Provencal Granola.

The main course, organic Whitmuir lamb with spiced lamb merguez sausage, couscous, aubergine and shaved fennel, was followed by a modern interpretation of the classic French dessert, îles flottantes.

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Johnstone’s says, “I’ve relished producing this menu based on the key ingredients set out by The Craft Guild of Chefs and am excited to see what is forthcoming from the mystery box of ingredients which I will base my menu on for the final in October.”

Gary Jones, awards judge, adds that Johnstone is “a humble chef, who has worked very hard to provide the judges with great flavours and contrasts.”

Johnstone joined Borthwick Castle in 2017 having launched his career at a young age, winning the inaugural MasterChef: The Professionals in 2008.

He later honed his skills working alongside Michel Roux Jnr at Le Gavroche and Albert Roux at Chez Roux.

Borthwick Castle hosts regular seasonal Dining Club Evenings. The next, on 7 July, features an imaginative five course menu, The Tastes of Summer, prepared by Johnstone and can be followed by a stay in one of Borthwick’s sumptuous bedchambers.

Cost is from £115 per person, alternatively extend your experience by staying overnight, subject to availability.

To book visit