Competition Outline

Although rigorous, the competition is designed to ensure minimal disruption to applicant’s working schedule. 

 You must be employed full-time in food and beverage service, in any sector of the industry, within the United Kingdom.

You must also be aged between 22 and 28 on the closing date for entries of Tuesday 3rd  October 2023 – born between 4th October 1994 and 2nd October 2001.

Call for entries
Monday 4th September 2023

Entry closing date
Tuesday 3rd October 2023

Saturday 21st October 2023 – The Langham

Monday 23 October 2023  – Hotel Cafe Royal

The quarter-final will be spread over two days, candidates will only be required to attend one of the sessions.

Monday 20th November 2023  – Rosewood London

Development seminar
Monday 8th January 2024 – The Corinthia London

Monday 15th January 2024 – The Corinthia London

Awards ceremony
Monday 5th February 2024 – Claridge’s

Scholarship prizes
Spread over 2024 – 2025

The online application will ask for your work and personal contact details and those of your employer/manager and marketing lead. You will also be asked to confirm your age.

You will then be asked to:

1. Answer 10 multiple choice questions

2. Give written answers to three restaurant service tasks.

3. Answer the following questions:

a) Identify and explain what you consider to be your TWO major achievements in your career to date. (Maximum 50 words).

b) Briefly explain TWO ways you think entering the Gold Service Scholarship will be of benefit to you. (Maximum of 50 words).

c) Please identify and explain ONE way in which you could promote the front of house profession. (Maximum 50 words).

Finally, you will also need to submit your up-to-date CV in PDF format.

You will need to complete an online entry on the APPLY page.

In October, those shortlisted will be invited to a quarter-final. Notifications will also be sent to those who have not been shortlisted.

The judges will include members of the Gold Service Scholarship Competitions Committee, together with invited guest judges. All the judges are professionals within the industry.

You will receive a notification and a detailed brief.

At the quarter-final you will undertake a series of tasks to test your knowledge and skills in different aspects of food and beverage service. These will include:

  • Completing a test paper consisting of 50 multiple choice questions
  • A short personal interview
  • A service skills exercise.

Within two weeks of the quarter-final those who have been selected for a place will be invited to a semi-final. Notifications will also be sent to those who have not been selected.

You will receive a notification and a detailed brief.

The semi-final will include:

• Table preparation
• Deciding service priorities
• Wine decanting and cocktail making
• Salesmanship

At the end of the semi-final you will be presented with a certificate and a copy will also be provided for your employer.

Yes. Before the semi-final, your employer/manager will be asked to confirm that appropriate time, mentoring and support will be given to you for the duration of the competition process. If you change employer during the entry process your new employer will be asked for the same endorsement.

You will receive a written notification, and details of what is to happen next.

To assist you in competing at the final there will also be a one-day masterclass, where all requirements of the final will be covered.

All winning finalists will be invited to plan, prepare for, and serve a three-course lunch, including canapés, champagne and wines. You will each serve a table of four guests, the menu will consist of two dishes plated and two dishes served in the guéridon style, for all three courses.

As part of the final you will also have been required to complete a written order of service. A runner will be allocated to you.

Judging includes mise en place, welcome, meal service, wine and beverage service as well as professionalism / demeanour, social skills and potential.

All winning finalists will be invited, with a guest, to attend the awards ceremony. The results will be announced at the ceremony.

The reception and awards ceremony will be attended by industry leaders, invited guests, sponsors and representatives of the media.

You will receive a winning finalist certificate, with a copy for your employer. The scholar and commendations will then be announced.

The Scholarship will include a mix of educational prizes, tailored to the development needs and aspirations of the scholar, to be taken over the following year. 

This could include one week work experiences,  at a range of different establishments, a wine-based study visit, and continuous mentoring. All winning finalists will attend a bespoke educational programme at the Lausanne Hotel School in Switzerland.

In addition, the scholar will be provided with a range of learning/qualification opportunities, customised to the scholar’s individual aspirations. 

Competition Rules

  • Entrants must be employed full-time in food and beverage service within the United Kingdom and be aged between 22 and 28 on the closing date for entries.
  • Entrants must provide contact details of a referee, ideally their line manager / employer who will endorse and support their application and confirm, in writing, that appropriate time, mentoring and support will be given for the duration of the competition. If any candidate changes, or intends to change, their employment during the competition, the organisers must be informed. Any new employer will be asked to confirm, in writing, the same endorsement and support. The organisers also reserve the right to reconsider a candidate’s eligibility.
  • Entrants should be able to provide evidence of their education, training and achievements and demonstrate, in their entry, that they have the passion and potential to work hard and succeed in food and beverage service.
  • Any establishment in the hospitality industry may submit any number of entries, providing each entry is for a different person.
  • Only entries made through the official entry process will be accepted. No responsibility can be accepted for entries lost, delayed or damaged in any way. 
  • The organisers reserve the right to use and publish any submitted entry material.
  • The judges’ decision at each stage of the competition is final. Winners of each stage will be contacted within two weeks of the judging process. 
  • If any of the judges is known to any of the entrants for any reason they will stand out of any discussion about that competitor’s entry. This is to avoid any potential conflict of interest and ensure the integrity of the Scholarship judging process is maintained.
  • The prizes, as set out on the website, are correct at the time of publishing. These will be available during the 12 months following the competition. Should any prize become unavailable, the organisers reserve the right to vary or amend them to an equivalent or better. No cash alternatives are available.
  • Educational visits, arranged for the winning finalists, may only be taken once.
  • Competitors enter and take part in the competition at their own risk. The organisers disclaim all and any liability to the scholar and winning finalists in respect of their participation in the prizes.
  • All reasonable travel and subsistence expenses incurred by the winning finalists, to and from the educational trips, will be met by The Gold Service Scholarship (provided receipts are supplied) if these are not provided by the employer.
  • By making an application, entrants are agreeing to the organisers holding personal data about them for the purpose of the competition and the Scholarship.