Promoting Hospitality as a career of choice, a profession and a vocation, Young Chef Young Waiter USA is a national competition open to all young professional waiters and chefs from any background working in the USA Restaurant sector.

The first Young Chef Young Waiter USA competition will be open to chefs and waiters who and are under 26 years old from any background working in the hospitality industry.

The Young Chef Young Waiter competition was established in 1979 in the UK and is organised by The Nth Degree Global in partnership with UKHospitality and the Restaurant Association, to promote hospitality as a career of choice, a profession and a vocation.

The Young Chef Young Waiter USA two-day final will take place in September at the Long Beach Convention Center. This modern and stylish urban waterfront destination overlooks the bustling Rainbow Harbor, Queensway Bay and miles of sandy Pacific Ocean beachfront.

World Young Chef Young Waiter was launched in 2022 to extend the competition around the globe. The winners from each company will join together for a World Final on 16 November 2022 in Monaco.

Young Chef Young Waiter USA Competition:
Entries open online for YCYW USA at youngchefyoungwaiter.com on 16th June 2022 and will close on 31 August where a short-list will be selected.

Entry is free for young chefs and young waiters who are 26 years old or under and working in the hospitality industry in the USA.

The winners will be announced after taking part in a two-day live final on 19 and 20 September at the Long Beach Convention Center
The World Young Chef Young Waiter Final is scheduled for 16 November 2022 in Monaco



The aim of World Young Chef Young Waiter is simple: to uncover the very best young talent in our industry and help equip them with relevant skills, current knowledge and the network needed to succeed in the world of hospitality. Devised by respected professionals, the competition has a fresh modern approach that focuses on tasks and criteria that are challenging, educational and fun.

World Young Chef Young Waiter showcases all aspects of hospitality. Inspiring, empowering and inclusive, most of all we celebrate the capabilities and diversity of our amazing industry.

Many past winners have gone on to achieve huge success in hospitality and YCYW proudly supports the future stars in United States kitchens and restaurants. Winners and judges have included some the industry’s great recognisable names to include – Mark Sargeant, Marcus Wareing, Simon King, John Torode, Annie and Germain Schwab, Jeremy King, Raymond Blanc OBE, Heston Blumenthal OBE, The Earl of Bradford, Lord Forte, Angela Hartnett MBE, Simon Girling and Fred Sirieix.


A panel of high-profile service industry veterans, including renowned restaurateur Thomas Keller; award-winning chef Adam Sobel; and Michael Brennan, president of restaurants, will help narrow down the entries to a short list of 20 finalists—10 chefs and 10 waiters—who will battle it out in the two-day live finale and awards party at the Long Beach Convention Center. The two winners of YCYW United States will take part in the World Young Chef Young Waiter Final in Monaco!

Judges - USA

Chef Judges


Michael Brennan

President Specialty Restaurant Group

Michael Brennan, President of Restaurants, started with Specialty Restaurants in May of 2011.  Specialty Restaurants holds an impressive portfolio of 18 award-winning restaurants throughout the United States and generates $150M+ in Food & Beverage Revenue annually.  read more Michael started as a dishwasher when he was 15 years old.  He worked his way up, primarily in the kitchen, in restaurants around the world, learning from the best in the business.  He speaks Spanish and can get by with basic French.  These worldly experiences have helped mold him into the person he is today.  He enjoys giving back to the hospitality industry, mentoring people at all levels. 
Michael leads by example where you can find him helping his teams deliver a 5-Star experience!    

Adam Sobel

Partner of MINA Group and New Italian CO

Adam Sobel is the award-winning chef and partner of MINA Group and New Italian CO. Sobel earned acclaim and success after graduating from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. read more Chef Sobel has trained under some of the greatest Chefs in the world including Gunter Seeger, Charlie Trotter, Daniel Boulud and Guy Savoy. Adam moved to Las Vegas in 2003 to help create the James Beard Award winning restaurant Bradley Ogden at Caesars Palace, before moving on to become the chef de cuisine at Guy Savoy. In 2011, Sobel moved to Washington, DC to serve as executive chef at Chef Michael Mina’s Bourbon Steak, kickstarting a lifelong partnership with Chef Mina. At MINA Group, Sobel oversees culinary direction for the group’s 40+ restaurants across the US and Dubai, including the Michelin-starred flagship in San Francisco, MICHAEL MINA. Among many awards and television appearances, Sobel was crowned the “King of Porc” at the prestigious Grand Cochon at Aspen Food and Wine. Chef Sobel is an activist for sustainable farming, fishing and pasturing raising animals responsibly.

Roland Passot

Propriétaire and Chief Culinary Officer

Growing up in the culinary heart of France, it is no surprise that Roland Passot made his way into some of the best kitchens in the world. read more
After working as a young man in such French gastronomic institutions, such as Léon de Lyon, Roland made his way to Dallas to The French Room at the legendary Adolphus hotel in Dallas, where he was awarded the James Beard Award for Best Rising Star Chef in 1980.

In 1988 Roland moved to open his own cozy restaurant, La Folie, in the Russian Hill neighborhood of San Francisco. La Folie was an instant success, earning the coveted Michelin star, 4-stars from the San Francisco Chronicle, and a place in the Top 100 Bay Area Restaurants in 2015.

The Maîtres Cuisiniers de France inducted him in 1991 and awarded him their Lifetime Achievement award in 2015.

Our Partners and Supporters 2022 USA California

Our Global Partners and Supporters 2020 / 2021

Our Sponsors and Partners 2019