During Scottish Apprenticeship Week last year, we published a blog about a group of eight Modern Apprentices who had been recruited by Trump Turnberry (the company took on another two during the year). A year on, we look at their progress and hear from Executive Chef Munur Kara and award-winning apprentice Paul Tyrrell.
Some of the apprentices and junior chefs went on to have great success at the 2015 ScotHot Awards – Scotland’s biggest hospitality, tourism, and food and drink show with competitors come from all over the country. There were gold awards for Rury Patterson and Steve Walker, silver for Paul Tyrrell, Scott Jacket and Robert McCurdie, with Charlie Dedman, Leigh McGill, Andrew Mackay and Paul Tyrrell (scooping his second prize) receiving bronze.
The College’s work-based assessor, Joanne Martin said “The apprentices’ fantastic success was down to their commitment and drive to do well. I witnessed them coming in on their days off to practise their dishes and looking to their senior chefs for guidance, support and feedback – which they received in abundance. Each individual chef was encouraged from the outset to give it their all – which they did – and it paid off!”
Munur Kara is the Executive Chef at Trump Turnberry and explained the rationale for taking on apprentice chefs. He said: “When we hire apprentices, we always plan their future so that they’ve got a good three to four years career-wise lined up at Trump Turnberry. Ayrshire College has given our apprentices tasks that they have to follow. With the staffing levels that we’ve got here, this is a good help for me as it’s an extra pair of hands in getting the apprentices through the experience and the knowledge that they need to have to go to the next level.”
One of the apprentices, Paul Tyrrell, already had experience of working in London under Heston Blumenthal before he came to Ayrshire College. Although he already possessed that experience, Paul understood the benefits of going through an apprenticeship as he bids to make his way to the very top.
He said: “You can go into restaurants, hotels and any catering establishment, and learn the hands-on way of doing things. But you also need to know the theory behind the practical work and I think you get that through being an apprentice. It’s all very well being a good cook but, later on in life when you do move up the ranks, you need to know the theory side as well as the practical side. It’s very important to know both.”
Munur Kara said, “Paul’s moved on really well and adapted to busy restaurants and hotels, adapting his style when pressure’s on. He can command, and when there’s work to be done he puts his head down and gets the job done.”
“Trump Turnberry plans to carry on down the apprenticeship route. We will keep following on year-on-year. I’m planning on getting some more people on board next year – the conveyor belt will just keep going. As the apprentices come in, they’ll get signed up to Ayrshire College and then they’ll go forward.”
To hear more from Paul and Munur watch this video.
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