A Drumlithie youngster has served a winning dish for Stonehaven Rotary Club, by winning through to the national final of Rotary’s Young Chef.
Mackie Academy second-year pupil Heather Nisbet, 13, beat off stiff competition at the weekend by winning the regional, (Scottish and North-east of England), final of Young Chef and now goes forward to compete in the UK and Ireland final, on April 25 in Wrexham, representing Scotland and the North-east of England.
Heather trounced the competition, at Dundee and Angus College, with a three-course meal which featured a smoked salmon starter, a chicken wrapped in ham main course and a soft-set lemon cream dessert. She had already secured victories in the Stonehaven Rotary Club young chef competition and the District Final.
A delighted Peter O’Dowd, Stonehaven Rotary Club’s President, dubbed Heather’s performance as “Absolutely fabulous.”
He added: “Heather’s standard in the contest at Dundee was just unbelievable.”
Mr O’Dowd confirmed that it was the first time that Stonehaven Rotary Club has got so far in the competition.
Jennifer Macdonald, a former Stonehaven rotary club president who is also former acting head of Mackie Academy said: “Heather’s performance was absolutely brilliant.”
Mike Robins, a Stonehaven Rotary Club former president who is also rotary district co-ordinator for the Young Chef event, said that Heather’s achievement was “ marvellous.”
He added: “Although I have been running the competition for six years, it is the first time we have ever had a local girl in the regional final, let alone going through to the national finals.”
In other Stonehaven Rotary news, the tragic legacy of battle, in the shape of the world’s war memorials, was graphically illustrated to members of the town’s Rotary Club at their last meeting.
Club past president Peter Newell took members on his illustrated tour of what he described as conflict memorials beginning with memories of the American Civil War, including a tribute to a Union soldier who died before the conflict began.
The evidence of the appalling carnage of World War I, was also well covered by Mr Newell who moved on to World War II, with a pictorial look at the memorials marking the aftermath of D-Day and other events, including the memorial marking the US casualties of the Battle of the Bulge in 1944.
The speaker at the previous lunchtime meeting was past president Jim Henderson, who gave an illustrated talk based on visits to Texas to see members of his family who are living there. Jim is a keen and accomplished photographer and members had the opportunity to see a number of types wildlife, shot at close-range, with a long lens for the safety of the photographer, in the case of the alligators, and to avoid scaring off the more nervous animals. Jim had also attended a number of sports events in more than one sports stadium in Houston and, as one of his passions is formula one racing, he was delighted to be able to watch his heroes in action at the American Grand Prix, with the icing on the cake a win by Lewis Hamilton.
The District round of the Rotary Young Musician competition has taken place at St Leonard’s in the Field Church in Perth and Dylan Coolahan, who won the Stonehaven Rotary Club Young Musician competition last November, played two pieces for trumpet at the event but did not win a place in the area final, despite an excellent performance. The standard of performances in general this year was higher than in some of the previous years of the competition.