My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Katherine Jenkins OBE announced as Welsh chefs’ ambassador

Katherine Jenkins, OBE and Culinary Association of Wales president Arwyn Watkins, OBE, announce her new ambassadorial role at ICC Wales.

The Culinary Association of Wales (CAW) has this week announced  Welsh Superstar Katherine Jenkins OBE as its first ever ambassador ahead of Wales hosting a prestigious global event for chefs in 2026.

Katherine, the UK’s most successful classical artist of the century and founder of Cygnet Gin,  is taking on the role as the CAW prepares to welcome around 1,000 chefs from across the world to the Worldchefs Congress & Expo at the International Convention Centre Wales (ICC Wales) in Newport in May 2026.

In addition to being ambassador, Katherine’s partnership with the CAW promotes Cygnet Gin, the sustainable, luxury Welsh gin brand, which she and her artist and social-impact filmmaker partner,Andrew Levitas, launched in 2023.

Cygnet Gin is a CAW sponsor, and the company is devising an exciting, new competition to showcase the culinary potential of the ultra-premium spirit at the 2025 Welsh International Culinary Championships at ICC Wales in January.

Chefs will be challenged to cook up a mouthwatering three course pescatarian and dairy free menu showcasing the versatility of Cygnet Gin in each of the dishes.

Speaking about her new ambassadorial role, Katherine said, “I’m so honoured to be an ambassador for the Culinary Association of Wales. Across my career, I’m very, very proud of being Welsh and wherever I go, I always try to fly the flag for Wales. The Culinary Association of Wales being named as hosts for the biggest ever culinary event at the ICC Wales is incredibly exciting and important. When I heard that this was happening, I wanted to do all that I could to help support and amplify it, get behind it and cheer it on. So, if you love food like me, this is four days of food heaven. I can’t wait.

“We are so lucky in Wales – we have so much to offer, and we can offer so much to the world. I think people coming here, to the Celtic Manor and to the ICC, they’re just going to be absolutely blown away by the hospitality, the warmth, the friendship, the welcome, and I hope it’s the start of a lovely relationship for people. I’m really excited to see how the journey progresses and to be here and witness it in 2026.

Mr Watkins added, “It’s a huge coup and honour for the Culinary Association of Wales to secure Katherine as our ambassador for the Worldchefs Congress & Expo 2026. Being associated with such a global superstar is going to raise the profile of both the association and the event.

“We are looking forward to working closely with Katherine to promote Wales and Cygnet Gin to a global audience in the coming years.”

Born from the desire to break the mould in a traditionally male-dominated spirits industry, Katherine founded Cygnet Gin in a bid to create a luxury spirit that speaks to consumers who appreciates the finer things, reflecting their taste and desire to celebrate life’s successes.

As gin aficionados, Katherine and Andrew have created the multi-award-winning Cygnet Gin are on a mission to take this exceptional Welsh product to the rest of the world. The initial announcement about the arrival of Cygnet Gin made such a splash globally that pre-orders sold out in just a week.

Since launching six months ago, Cygnet Gin has exploded across the UK’s luxury restaurant and bar scene, now available at Isabel Mayfair, Searcys, The Rosewood Hotel, and across the full Caprice Group including The Ivy Collection restaurants nationwide to name but a few. Alongside this, award winning Cygnet 22 and Cygnet Welsh Dry Gin are available to purchase at Waitrose and John Lewis nationwide, online and instore, and Marks & Spencer Welsh regional stores. The recent launch of the Cygnet Welsh Dry Gin & Tonic pre-mixed can arrives at a pivotal moment of the brand’s growth and aims to offer an ultra-premium gin & tonic on the go.