World Young Chef Young Waiter 2022 Winners Announced

The Winners of World Young Chef Young Waiter are from Wales: Young Chef: Ali Halbert from Heaney’s, Cardiff; Young Waiter Tilly Morris from Grove of Narberth

The winners of the World Young Chef Young Waiter (World YCYW) Competition 2022 were announced at a special awards dinner in Monaco last night at the spectacular Maybourne Riviera Hotel (16 November) attended by Prince Albert II of Monaco.

We are delighted to announce the winners of the World Young Chef Young Waiter Competition:

The winning chef is Ali Halbert from Heaney’s in Cardiff (pictured left) The winning waiter is Tilly Morris from Grove of Narberth (pictured right) 

The World Champions were chosen out of seven chef and seven waiter finalists from England, Cayman Islands, Ireland, Macao, Wales, Singapore & Canada, by Head Chef Judge Adam Handling and Head Waiter Judge Simon King, alongside Ching He Huang MBE, Mark Sargeant, Mario Perera, Michael Kwan, David Wong and Andy Downton. Christian Garcia, the private chef to Prince Albert II of Monaco and Giuliano Ungaro, the Hotel Manager at the Maybourne Rivera Hotel were guest judges.

The Winning Chef – Ali Halbert

Originally from Shropshire, Ali Halbert has lived and worked in Switzerland, France, Denmark and Portugal. He now lives and works in Cardiff, Wales at Heaney’s. Ali said: “This competition is so incredible and really helps push the confidence of any young hospitality worker.”

Ali’s Winning Menu: “A little bit of Wales in Monaco”

Starter: “A day out fishing”
Turbot, Clams, Grape, Beurre Blanc & Laverbread
Main Course: “Ode to a deer”
Venison, Artichoke, Plum, Pine & Black Garlic
Dessert: “Sugarloaf Mountain”
Acorn, Cremeux, Walnut, White Chocolate & Cep with Blackberries

Head Chef Judge Adam Handling said: “What a world final! It was incredible to see the talent that was involved this year – they were really some of the best. Ali did Wales very proud – he was consistently good with all his dishes, which is a difficult thing to aChieve but consistency is key. You could tell he was really gunning for that title. So, very well done. With sustainability at the heart of my ethos, it really is about investing in the future generation and making the future of this industry an exciting place to be. It is a real honour to be involved in a young person’s competition, to help mentor them, progress them and give them a spotlight to shine. Having competed in this competition many moons ago and seeing the doors that it opens for its competitors; I would definitely encourage the young talent of this industry to get involved. They will make lifelong bonds, connecting with winners from the other countries.”

The Winning Waiter – Tilly Morris

Tilly studied hospitality at Exeter before working at the Michelin starred Adare Manor in Ireland. Tilly now lives and works in Wales having joined the Grove as Chef de Rang, before being promoted to Head Waitress. Tilly said: “In the next 5 years I see myself developing my strength of knowledge and expertise and progressing up to restaurant manager.”

Head Waiter Judge Simon King said: “I’ve been fortunate enough to be involved in the World Young Chef Young Waiter competition for many years now and to see it transformed into a global competition is so exciting. As a previous winner I know how impactful it can be to your career, knowledge and network. Tilly shone out from the crowd with her relentless warmth, engagement and positivity. She consistently demonstrated her knowledge and passion in every task, showed willingness to help other competitors and commitment to hospitality”

The Runners Up:

Second Place: Team Singapore – Chef Aiken Low from Cure (pictured below left) & waiter Terry Wong from Jaan by Kirk Westaway (pictured below right)
Third Place: Team England – Chef Miltan Masha from The Monarch Theatre (pictured below left) & waiter Elisa Doisneau from Kitchen Table (pictured below right)

NEFT Cocktail Challenge

NEFT Vodka ran a special Cocktail Challenge for the Young Waiter Finalists at the event which was won by Elisa Doisneau from Team England for her cocktail “The Earl’s Garden”, receiving a prize of $1000 for team England ($500 each).

“The Earl’s Garden by Elisa Doisneau”


In tribute to British culture, transforming the classic ‘tea time’ into ‘drink time’!
Neft Vodka, Earl Grey Tea, St Germain Liqueur, White Verjus, Peychaud’s Bitter, Salt & Bergamot

NEFT Vodka also awarded Tilly Morris from Wales the award for most Creative Cocktail, taking home a prize of $1000 for team Wales ($500 each).

“I See the Sea by Tilly Morris:”


Inspired by Pembrokeshire in Wales and the people Tilly has met. This cocktail bring a little piece of Wales to Monaco
Neft Vodka, Samphire, Oyster Leaf, Jalapeno Brine, Still Wild Extra Dry Vermouth, Bottle Green Elderflower Cordial & Lime Zest Bitters

Paul Robinson, Chief Creative Officer, NEFT Vodka: “I was so impressed by the innovation and creativity of Elisa Doisneau of England and Tilly Morris of Wales. The cocktails they created, The

Earl’s Garden and I See The Sea, were so perfectly crafted and unique. I hope to be able to enjoy them in a bar sometime in the very near future. As a young progressive brand, it is such a pleasure to be involved with a competition that promotes and rewards young progressive talent in hospitality. Spirits and hospitality have always walked hand and hand and the future of these global industries depends on the energy and creative skills of enthusiastic innovators.”

The Final

The event kicked off on 15th November with an evening reception at the Yacht Club of Monaco. The final was held at The Maybourne Riviera on 16th November with the chefs & waiters preparing and serving their specially designed menus, and was followed by a glamorous awards dinner in the evening attended by Prince Albert of Monaco.

Chairman of World YCYW, Robert Walton MBE said: “I am so proud to have crowned the World Champion Chef & Waiter from Wales. The competition is now 45 years old, and I am so proud of how it continues to highlight the young, up-and-coming talent in our exciting industry. The aim of World YCYW is simple: to uncover the very best young talent in our industry. Our 2022 entrants have had the opportunity to meet high profile industry professionals, learn new skills and make new friends. It’s a chance for competitors to test their proficiency, progress their careers, learn, and develop their potential. The competition has provided a launchpad for the careers of many of our industry’s most successful names, and we have been so lucky to have the support throughout the years from the likes of Roy Ackerman and Robert Carrier, who were two of the original YCYW judges and leading restaurateurs. We are incredibly grateful to all our sponsors and partners for their continued support, especially the wonderful Maybourne Rivera Hotel for their hospitality in the last two days .”

Mark Sargeant said: “Being involved in World Young Chef Young Waiter is an absolute dream. I was lucky enough to win the competition in 1996 when I was working at Coast Restaurant with Steve Terry. Gordon was a judge and after that he offered me a job at Aubergine. I guess you could say the rest is history but winning that competition was without doubt the open door for my career. I am so proud to be able to come back and pass on my experience to the new World YCYW as I feel it’s my job to push the careers of the future talent out there.”

Ching He Huang MBE said: “I am delighted to be a Chairwoman for Asia for Young Chef Young Waiter Asia and World Young Chef Young Waiter, I firmly believe in supporting the next generation of talent. Having worked in the media to promote Chinese/Asia cuisine in the UK since 2003, I

know what it is like to be young and be trying to break into an industry one is passionate about. However, I certainly did not get to the position I am in without the support of many. World Young Chef Young Waiter is an amazing competition that will bring together the best culinary art talents from around the world, to celebrate them, to nurture them, to support them and to guide them. I am incredibly proud to support it, thank you Robert Walton MBE and Sean Valentine FIH for your vision and your trust. Thank you David Wong, Chief Architect for World Young Chef Young Waiter Macao 2022, The Wynn and MGTO for coming together to support the first ever World Young Chef Young Waiter competition in Macao. It has been an especially tough time locally and globally for the industry, however it shines much brighter with you all leading heroes coming together in support of the next generation of young culinary leaders for our industry.”

Mario Perera said: “It has been a privilege and an honour to be involved in the judging of the first Young Chef Young Waiter World Final. I’m thrilled to be going to Monaco and seeing and tasting the finalists’ innovative menus. The talent that we are seeing is really extraordinary, the future of hospitality is looking incredibly bright.”

Andy Downton said: “I have been privileged to be part of the senior judging team for the competition for the past 3 years, mainly judging the UK along with the China and Asia competition. My main role is to guide, support & help maintain the standards of the competitions along with making sure the competitors are fully supported in order to give them all the best opportunity to go as far as possible. The importance of World YCYW has really grown, and the standard of the chefs and waiters entering has become very high which is great to see. The final will pit the best of the best from all countries involved and whoever comes out on top really will be fully deserving of the crown. Having a worldwide competition is massive exposure for our amazing industry & shows the importance for us to celebrate hospitality as a profession. I am very lucky to be able to do my part in helping and making sure that the future hospitality stars are supported. I can only see the WorldYCYW competition becoming bigger in the future with more countries joining in and helping to showcase young talent. Bring on the first ever World final of YCYW and I wish all of the competitors the very best of luck.”

David Wong said: “I am delighted to be the Chief Architect of Young Chef Young Waiter Macao 2022 and one of the judges at the first World Young Chef Young Waiter Final in Monaco. By hosting and supporting this event in Macau we hope to encourage local catering talents to broaden their horizons and achieve renown for Macau on the international stage, while at the same time contributing to the sustainable future development of Macau’s catering and tourism

industries. This is a competition that will elevate Macau’s skilled labour onto a global platform and provide stepping stones of future opportunities. We need to encourage and invest into our hospitality’s future with such competitions and support our local talent”

Sean Valentine, Managing Director World Young Chef Young Waiter said: “It’s been a great few days and we have had a lot of fun in Monaco. We have worked so hard over the last four years to modernise this historic concept and expand it from a UK competition to a global one. The first ever World Final in Monaco has brought together the best young talent in the hospitality industry to showcase their amazing talents. We look forward to expanding the competition to additional countries for 2023 with the support of our incredible judges, partners and sponsors.”

Meet the Other Finalists

Ireland Competition – the winning chef is Ciara Kenneally from the Oak Room Restaurant at Adare Manor (L) & the winning waiter is Emma Jackson from Liath Restaurant (R).
Macao Competition – the winning chef is William Wang Weicheng from Wynn Macau (L) & the winning waiter is Mondass Velautham from Wynn Palace (R)


Canada Competition – the winning chef is Haofeng (Tyler) Lin from Hilton Toronto & the winning waiter Paul Mckeand from Langdon Hall Country House and Spa
Cayman Islands Competition – the winning chef is Brittney Bodden from Tomfoodery Kitchen (L) & the winning waiter is Laurent Bodden from Grand Old House (R)

About the World Young Chef Young Waiter Competition

The Young Chef Young Waiter competition, established in 1979, was relaunched by hospitality experts The Nth Degree Global in 2019 in partnership with UKHospitality and the Restaurant Association.

World YCYW was launched in 2022 to extend the competition around the globe.       

The competition promotes hospitality as a career of choice, a profession, and a vocation.

The competition is open to young chefs and waiters under the age of 26.

17th November 2022

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