Meet the Chefs - Exeter Festival of Food & Drink

Meet the Chefs

The 2020 Chef Lineup

Take a look at all of the amazing chefs that are confirmed for 2020! There are even more to come...

Michael Caines MBE - Lympstone Manor

Michael Caines MBE is one of the UK’s most celebrated and acclaimed chefs. Over the past fifteen years, he has also proved himself to be a successful and imaginative hotelier.
Lympstone Manor marks the pinnacle of a career that has been simply scintillating. For the past two years, Michael has spent his time creatively and imaginatively transforming an historic Grade II listed Georgian mansion overlooking the Exe estuary into his wholly personal and exciting vision of contemporary country house hospitality for the 21st century. With 21 stunning guestrooms and suites named after the birds of the estuary, three beautiful and individual dining rooms in which to savour Michael’s acclaimed cuisine matched with a world-class wine cellar, 28 acres of gardens, grounds and parkland all set in the beauty and tranquility of East Devon and the Jurassic Coast, a stay here is a totally exceptional experience.

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Scott Paton - Boringdon Hall

One of the South West’s most talented rising star chefs, Scott started cooking at The Jack in the Green near Exeter, having joined them as a kitchen porter when he was still at school. He worked his way through the ranks at The Jack over a period of 9 years, from KP to Commi Chef to Pastry Chef to Sous Chef. Whilst there he completed various work placements in other acclaimed restaurants and patisseries, both in the UK and in Paris. In terms of awards, Scott has won South West Chef of the Year in 2009, and Dessert of the Year in 2008. The Horn has also won a whole host of awards during his time as Head Chef there, including “Best Fine Dining Restaurant in Devon” in the 2012 Food & Drink Awards. They have also won a bronze award for “Devon Hotel of the Year” in the 2012 Devon Tourism Awards. He’s now set to shake things up at Plymouth’s historic Boringdon Hall Hotel’s Restaurant, Àclèaf – with three Food Reader Award nominations under his belt already!

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Pete Murt - Rick Stein, The Seafood Restaurant

Pete Murt is Padstow born and bred, which is where his passion for cooking the freshest seafood started. He joined the St Petroc’s Bistro team in 2000 as Kitchen Porter and then progressed up to Chef de Partie before moving to their flagship The Seafood Restaurant as Sous Chef. Then came a two-year adventure in London working with Claude Bosi at his 2 Michelin starred restaurant Hibiscus, before returning to Rick Stein’s team as Head Chef when they opened Sandbanks in 2015. Over four years on and his drive and desire to serve the highest quality food is stronger than ever – this drive saw him promoted to become Head Chef of The Seafood Restaurant in late 2019.

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Guy Owen - St Enodoc Hotel

Guy was born in Hampshire and developed his culinary expertise with some of London’s leading chefs, including Gordon Ramsay at his Michelin starred restaurant at Claridge’s, Jerome Tauvron at L’Etranger and James Bennington and Bruce Poole at Michelin starred La Trompette. Guy moved to South East Cornwall at the age of eight and throughout his school years began helping in the kitchens of local restaurants after lessons and at weekends. More recently, having returned to the West Country in 2009, Guy worked at leading hotels Gidleigh Park under Michael Caines MBE, and the Driftwood Hotel under Chris Eden. Guy was integral to The Idle Rocks winning 2018 Seafood Restaurant of the Year by The Caterer. Now based at St. Enodoc Hotel in Rock, Guy is passionate about preparing authentic and inspiring dishes, conceived from sustainable, locally grown ingredients.

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Jim Fisher - Exeter Cookery School

Co-owner and head chef / tutor at the award-winning Exeter Cookery School, Best in the South West according to Food Magazine readers, Jim Fisher is an entertaining and engaging demo chef who has honed his skills during an extensive culinary career. A former Masterchef semi-finalist, Jim first started cheffing in the kitchens of Exeter’s White Hart Hotel, where he met and proposed to his now wife and business partner, Lucy. He then went on to cook alongside Rick Stein in Padstow and Alistair Little in Notting Hill before the couple upped sticks and headed to the Dordogne to open up a residential cookery school. Despite the locals’ bemusement at the idea of an Englishman teaching anyone to cook, not least in France, CookinFrance became a big hit! Fifteen years later, Jim and Lucy returned to the UK, following their roots back to Devon, and are now making a huge success of their exciting new venture on Exeter’s thriving quayside.

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Hylton Espey - Merchants Manor

One of South Africa’s most highly rated young chefs, Hylton Espey, is the Chef Patron at Falmouth’s Merchants Manor. Following on in the path of his Irish ancestry, Hylton moved to Falmouth In 2016 where his story continues to grow. Hylton grew up in Cape Town surfing, diving, fishing and exploring the mountains of False Bay. In December 2002 he walked into Olympia Cafe as a commis chef under the guidance of Brad Ball and owner Kenneth McClarty. The restaurant was packed every day, they made everything fresh and the ingredients were the best you could find – Hylton was hooked. His mantra is that “what grows together goes together” and he loves Merchants Manor’s devotion to using Cornish produce wherever possible.

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