THE only Michelin star chef in Greater Manchester has revealed he is quitting the region to chase stars at restaurants elsewhere in the UK.
Paul Kitching has seen to it that Juniper has held onto its Michelin star for 11 years, maintaining its status in the latest guide published last month, but the restaurant, in Altrincham, could now lose it after Kitching announced plans to quit in April.
Under Michelin rules, the restaurant will retain its star for one year, but will then need the new chef to prove they can maintain the standards set by Kitching if Juniper is to hold onto the award.
Kitching and his partner Katie O`Brien are in talks with potential investors over a deal which would see them relocate outside of the north west, but he will not reveal the exact location of his new venture until the deal is safely completed.
Kitching told the Manchester Evening News: "We really wanted to stay in Altrincham but when we went out to investors they tended not to be local.
"We don`t want to leave but we do want to move forward so we have to go where the investment is.
"We`ve held a single star for over a decade which is great, but I`m hungry for more and that means we have to follow the money."
As a result of Kitching`s imminent departure, Juniper`s owner Soups Ltd is on the hunt for an exciting and ambitious chef to pick up where he leaves off and retain Greater Manchester`s only Michelin star.