Head Chef, André Garrett, Cliveden

What inspired you to become a chef?

I was never academic at school and was always going to do something craft based. My grandmother was maître d’ at the Pump Rooms in Bath and as a family we used to visit her often. We’d go through the kitchens and I used to love seeing the chefs working. I then took a part time job in a hotel in Bath which in turn took me onto college.

What do you find most satisfying about your work?

The fact that we can create and bring pleasure to guests, working with suppliers and the seasons on the incoming ingredients.

And least?

The fact that hospitality is still not seen as a viable career by most young people and their parents.

Is there a chef you particularly admire, and if so why?

Michel Roux Snr, he is a true master of hospitality, what he and his brother Albert Roux have done for chefs, restaurants and the UK food scene is massive. I’m not sure where we would be without them!

Is there any aspect of the contemporary food scene that you find especially irritating?

Tasting menu only, no choice.

What would be your perfect dinner?

Great company, great wine, simply cooked local ingredients from the market and a sea view.

Are there any food critics whose opinions you respect, and if so why?

All critics and guides are important, the most respected for me are the Good Food Guide, Michelin Guide and the AA, I particularly follow Elizabeth on Food and Andy Hayler online also. All are very knowledgeable, respected and impartial.

What’s the most important thing to bear in mind when cooking your recipes at home?

Be prepared in advance, read the recipe fully beforehand and ensure there is enough time.