Carluke chef is game for stardom

Steven Walker, named as Scotland's game chef of the year.
Steven Walker, named as Scotland's game chef of the year.

After finding a potential career in computers boring, Carluke’s Steven Walker decided to cook up a new idea for this future.

Now, just a few years later, that decision seems to have already served up success, with the 24-year-old being officially named as one of Scotland’s top chefs.

The former Carluke High School pupil has triumphed in a national competition and now holds the title of Scotland’s game chef of 2017.

His proud mum Isobel takes up the story, saying: “On leaving Carluke High, he went to university studying computing, and he soon realised that this was not for him, so he changed course and went to college to study catering.

“After completing his first year, he secured a job at Turnberry where he was allowed to complete his course as the tutors from the Ayr campus came to the hotel to assess his progress and keep his course work up to date.

“During his time there, he entered the Scot Hot competition for young up-snd-coming chefs, winning a gold medal in the risotto section.

“ His success at Scot Hot was noted by the head chef at Loch Lomond Golf Club, and when a vacancy arose there, he contacted Steven to offer him a position, which Steven accepted.

“His head chef then entered him for the game chef of the year national competition in August 2016, and he made it through to the top 10 finalists,

“They competed in that final a few weeks ago at Braehead Foods in Kilmarnock and he won first place.”

That victory, thanks to woodcock and hare dishes, was all the sweeter as the judges were four Michelin-starred chefs including celebrity cook Tom Kitchin.

Now back at the hotplates and stoves in the top golf clubhouse’s kitchen on Lomondside, Steven is now almost assured of future success and perhaps even chef stardom status with his own restaurant, lucrative cookbook deals and even telly series all ahead of him.

And it is fairly certain that he’s glad now that a career in computing wasn’t to his taste.