Masterchef show a ‘big boost’ for Oli Farrar

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Chef Oli Farrar Chef Oli Farrar

by Hannah Baker T&A Reporter A Bradford-born chef who made it to the final of this year’s Masterchef contest is now hoping to open his own restaurant.

Oli Farrar, originally of Clayton, was knocked out of the contest this week after beating 36 other contestants to a place in the last round of the competition.

Since appearing in the programme, the 25-year-old, who is employed by the five-star Haymarket Hotel, near Trafalgar Square in London, said he had been contacted by several people interested in helping him set up his own fish restaurant by the coast.

Mr Farrar, who returns to Bradford regularly to visit relatives in Queensbury, said: “The competition was a really good experience. I would love to do it again. I got a lot from it. It was a big boost to my confidence to get the comments I did. It showed me I’m actually doing quite well in my career.

“It’s amazing how many people watch it. It’s a great experience and you learn a lot but it’s a lot of hard work as well.”

For the first time in the show’s history four rather than three chefs were put through to the final stage of the competition meaning one contestant, Mr Farrar, had to leave at the start of the round.

“Because they put an extra person through someone had to go right at the beginning, “ he said.

“They didn’t tell us until we turned up on the day. We were slightly upset. The people who stayed in the competition got to go to the second best restaurant in the world.”

Monday’s episode saw Mr Farrar prepare a chicken ballantine starter and main course of beef wellington for judges Michel Roux Jr and Gregg Wallace.

Of the judges he said: “Michel Roux Jr’s comments are always constructive, there’s nothing to put you down. He’s very passionate about helping young people in the industry.

“Gregg’s a bit of a joker. He sees things from a different perspective, from a customer’s point of view, so his comments mean a lot as well.”

Mr Farrar started working part-time as a chef ten years ago at a pub in York and has also worked at Claridges Hotel, in Mayfair.

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