Read more about the evening here.
Tickets = £25 (+£1 online processing fee)
Up-and-coming chef to head charity dinner
Bangor born Aiyeesha Barron-Clarke, a World Skills UK champion chef, will head a charity dinner on the 11th March in aid of Gŵyl Fwyd Caernarfon.
At the moment, Aiyeesha is Chef de Partie at Catch 22 Brasserie, Valley and on the night she will have a team of 10 final year Coleg Llandrillo Menai catering students working for her. She will also have her current employer, head chef Neil Davies, lending a hand as part of the team.
Aiyeesha would be the first to admit that education didn't suit her, and she left Ysgol Dyffryn Ogwen with two GSCEs.
Aiyeesha said, “The current education system just didn’t work for me – I wanted to be creative and do stuff with my hands and sitting in a classroom all day just didn’t suit me. At 20, living in a supported house with my two kids, my support worker persuaded me to attend a ‘Come ‘n Cook’ course, organised by Flying Start. It was a course to educate young mothers about nutrition and so on.
“And that was the beginning of my catering journey. I then joined the Chef’s Academy at the Oystercatcher in Anglesey, created specifically for people from deprived backgrounds. It was an amazing opportunity and gave me the confidence to go for it. You don’t often hear of schemes like this, which was a life changer for me. After successfully completing my NVQ Level 1 there with Coleg Menai, I got a job at the Oystercatcher’s sister company, The White Eagle in Rhoscolyn.”
From then on, Aiyeesha gained experience at various local restaurants and gastropubs trying to find a workplace that suited her style of cooking. Then she came across an opportunity to work under Chef Neil Davies at newly opened family run restaurant, the Catch 22 Brasserie in Valley.
Aiyeesha added, “I am passionate about using good, local food and I’ve created a menu for the Gwyl Fwyd charity dinner that includes the very best Welsh ingredients such as Oinc Oinc pork and the Welsh Truffle Company who are based in Usk, and have an amazing product. I also have Menai Mussels, Cynan’s Snowdonia mushrooms, and local produced kefir on the menu.”
Lastly, Aiyeesha explained who inspired her. “When people ask me who do I look up to, I always say that I get my inspiration looking down at my two kids – Aiden and Violet. They are amazing and inspire me everyday. I want to show them that with hard work and ambition, anything is possible.”
The Gwyl Fwyd charity dinner will be held at Coleg Menai (former Ysgol Friars site), on the 11 March at 7pm. Tickets are £25 per head and available from the Gwyl Fwyd Caernarfon website or from Palas Print book shop in Caernarfon.
For more information or to arrange an interview with Aiyeesha, please contact Angharad Prys on 07900 981158 or email@example.com.