Head Chef, Hywel Jones, Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa

What inspired you to become a chef?

I was fortunate that my parents always made an effort to take us out to nice restaurants when my sister and I were young. I enjoyed the whole experience of dining out, from dressing appropriately, choosing dishes I’d never heard of and discovering new ingredients. It was at this point I realised food and cooking was where my career lay.

What do you find most satisfying about your work?

We have an amazing team here at Lucknam Park. It is genuinely a pleasure and privilege to work alongside them.

And least?

The older I’m getting, the more my body is beginning to struggle with the demands this industry puts on it! Is there a chef you particularly admire, and if so why? I’ve been fortunate to work for, work with and know many amazing chefs. It would not be fair to single any one of them out.

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

Contemporary is not my style so I try not to get caught up in it. Describe your perfect dining companion or guest. If Katherine Jenkins was not available I’d love to have dinner with all my late grandparents.

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

Fay Maschler and Bill Knott. Their opinions are always honest and both are highly educated and experienced in the food world.

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

Keep things as simple as possible. Do as much preparation as you can beforehand.

Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa