Suffolk Chef Celebrates 30th Anniversary at Leading Suffolk Hotel
Alan Ford, Head Chef at Hintlesham Hall is celebrating an amazing 30 years at the iconic Suffolk hotel.
Prior to joining Hintlesham Hall he worked at some of London’s grand hotels such as the Grosvenor, he also worked as one of Anton Mosimman’s eight sous chefs at the Dorchester.
“It is just a great team environment here and that is one of the reasons I am still here.” Commented Alan. “The entire team at the hotel are a great group of people who all care about the guests experience, we are all as important as each other.”
Alan is from a classical chef back ground, and always keeps that as the basis of what he does, however he does like to try new ideas and cook with seasonal ingredients, especially from the kitchen gardens.
When Alan joined back in 1988, the hotel was a small 17 bedroomed hotel, but not long after that it was announced that the hotel would almost double in size to 33 bedrooms. Alan Commented: “With the announcement I was then challenged with helping to design a new kitchen to accommodate the extra catering involved. Back in 1988 it was very restaurant led establishment with virtually no Corporate/Wedding trade, so we had to make sure we had the kitchen and facilities to match the increase in footfall.”
Fast-forward to today, the hotel has a massive wedding market, so the approach to food offerings has not only changed with the times but also to what they are able to produce for differing occasions.
The 2 AA Rosette restaurant has also recently undergone a name change and new menu. Carrier’s Restaurant is set to be put firmly on the map as a local destination restaurant, offering everyday dining sourcing the finest, freshest and most sustainable ingredients from local suppliers, with fruit, vegetables and herbs now being grown in the hotels very own gardens.
The hotel restaurant’s new name was chosen as legendary cookery writer and television chef Robert Carrier owned the hotel back in 1971 and was the beginning of the Hall’s longstanding reputation for exquisite food.
Graham McGregor, General Manager commented: “I would like to extend my congratulations to Alan on his 30th anniversary. It really is an amazing achievement. I also know how passionate he is about the next generation of professional chefs and has over the years mentored some young chefs who are now in their own right well known in Suffolk and beyond.”
So what does it take to be a great chef and stand the test of time? “Trust your instincts.” Commented Alan. “To be truly successful and go far in this industry, you have to love it. Make sure you have a passion for the work and for cooking. That way you won’t feel like you’re working a single day in your life!”
Alan has just contributed to the new Suffolk Feast Cookbook, which launches this summer and his passion for cooking, which incidentally comes from his mother, is sure to evolve yet again at this grand hotel.