André Garrett has announced that Paul O’Neill will take over as head chef at his eponymous flagship restaurant at Cliveden House in Berkshire. The 2013 Roux Scholarship winner joins the fine dining restaurant following the departure of Gavin Edney, who has left to head up the Elder restaurant and Woodsman grill in Berkshire. O’Neill has a background in hotel restaurants, having cooked at Ashdown Park Hotel in East Sussex and Berwick Lodge’s Hattusa restaurant in Bristol.
Asimakis Chaniotis has been named head chef at Michelin-starred Pied à Terre ahead of a ‘new era’ for the Fitzrovia restaurant that includes a ban on swearing. The chef says staff are all on board with the plan, and hopes it will lead to better staff retention in the once notoriously aggressive kitchen. Chaniotis is also launching a new menu this autumn inspired by his Greek upbringing and his time spent working at Pied à Terre under former head chefs Marcus Eaves and Andy McFadden. McFadden, who joined as executive chef in 2015, is no longer involved in the business.
Tom Hine has now replaced Will Holland as head chef at Coast in Pembrokeshire, Wales. Originally a KP at Rick Stein’s Seafood restaurant in his hometown of Padstow, Hine has since worked at Paul Ainsworth at Number 6, Gidleigh Park and Lympstone Manor alongside his mentor Michael Caines. Coast’s owner The Seren Collection is planning further investment in restaurant to allow Hine to reinvent its offering. The chef took the reins on 5 October after Holland departed for a role at the Atlantic Hotel in Jersey.
D&D London has appointed Simon Gregory as executive chef at Bluebird, Chelsea ahead of the group’s expansion in London and overseas. Originally from Australia, Gregory moved to London in 2003 to cook at the Gordon Ramsay Group and worked his way up to executive chef, overseeing restaurants including Petrus, Bread Street Kitchen and Savoy Grill. He joins D&D as it prepares to launch a second Bluebird restaurant at the BBC Television Centre development in White City, London and its first overseas site in New York next year.
Outlaw’s at The Capital head chef Tom Brown has moved on to set up his first solo project in east London’s Hackney Wick. Brown described his departure as the ‘end of an era’ but said that it was his ‘dream’ to launch his own restaurant, which is due to open early next year. He has handed over the reins to Outlaw’s former sous chef Andrew Sawyer.
Simon Blagden has stepped down as chief executive of Jamie Oliver’s restaurant empire after nearly 10 years with the business. His role had been called in to question in early October when it was announced that Jamie’s Italian was to be brought under the same management as Jamie Oliver Holdings, the chef’s television and book publishing business. It is understood that the group has now brought in an external advisor as it works on its strategy for developing the Jamie’s Italian and Barbecoa brands in the UK and overseas.
Former Ping Pong operations director Michael Pearson has been appointed managing director at Benito’s Hat with a brief to oversee expansion of the London-based burrito chain across the UK. The group recently secured its first site outside London, in Oxford, and reported its highest profit for several years in the face of competition from the likes of Tortilla, Chilango and US import Chipotle. Pearson and outgoing founder and CEO Ben Fordham, who is moving his family to the USA, will work together throughout November and December before he takes the reins in 2018.