Taste Buds chats to the Head Chef at Salcombe Harbour Hotel & Spa about his love of local produce and simple flavours
Must-try dish on your menu?
Cod and Crab. A locally caught cod fillet topped with a Salcombe crab crust, served with a beurre blanc.
Sum up your cooking style.
Local produce, simple flavour combinations.
Local produce to eat now?
Native lobsters, oysters and dayboat landings are in good supply and allow the menu to be kept fresh each day.
Do you prefer to eat in or out?
I have a family so we like to go out as often as we can. Our usual eating spots consist of a local cosy pub that serves good, hearty, English food at its best… and it must have a play park for my girls!
Describe your style of cooking?
I like to keep things simple. A plate of food can have flavours within that you can’t even see, so I strive to use the best local produce and allow the taste combinations and quality of the ingredients do the cooking!
What ingredients do you love at the moment?
I’m a huge advocate of game, especially venison. It’s a meat you can create so many dishes with, and Devon produces some of the best-quality game in the country.
Tell us about the best meal you ever had?
Lewtrenchard Manor. We had the Purple Carrot tasting menu… incredible.
Gordon Ramsay, without a doubt! I’ve grown up watching and learning from him, and continue to do so now. I have all his books and admire the way he has so much passion for this craft, and how he commands only the very best from his team.
Top tip for budding chefs?
Work hard, keep your head down and take every opportunity to learn from your peers. Their knowledge is invaluable in allowing you to learn the fundamentals, to then go forward and forge your own style.
What’s the most unusual thing you’ve cooked with/eaten?
Barbecued snails, on the open grill with just a little salt to season.
Favourite foodie joke?
Anecdote to a mushroom: “Guys, there ain’t mush-room in here; hang on, just trying to be a fun-gi!” This always makes me giggle!
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… just like the food we write about, Taste Buds is lovingly made using the finest local ingredients!
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Jeff Cooper: 01626 871161
Jennie Cooper: 01626 871161
Julie Hutchins: 07843 621463