Meet the Team: Thomas Robertson
We are delighted to introduce you to Thomas Robertson, our Head Chef and share a bit more about Thomas' role at The Coniston.
Is there a chef you admire the most?
I really admire Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall! I like the fact that he was integral in driving forward the sustainable movement and the origins on where you get your food, which is so important to our industry – and the world as a whole – today. His passion for local produce has had a profound impact on me, and has shaped my ethos as both a chef and an individual person.
How long have you worked in the industry?
I have worked as a chef for over seventeen years, including over six years as a Head Chef and some time working in Chapter One – a Michelin Star restaurant in London.
What inspired you to become a chef?
It was actually from experimenting in the kitchen whilst growing up, I started trying my hand at cooking and realised it was something I was quite good at – and what’s more – I enjoyed it too. It was from that point my passion for food grew and I became really focussed on it becoming my career.
What do you love most about being a chef?
My favourite part of being a chef is the whole development journey - taking something from conception through to the execution. Seeing an initial idea or thought evolve to end product is something quite incredible, and I especially enjoy the reaction from customers when they try something new that I’ve helped create or curate – that is really rewarding.
What is your favourite cuisine?
I think British Cuisine is absolutely fantastic. As a nation we have so many incredible ingredients that you can do so much with, here in Yorkshire we are particularly proud of the produce on our doorstep. I also love how you can take influences from other cuisines around the world and influence traditional British dishes – that reinvention is exciting.
What is your favourite dish on the new menu and why?
The Braised Ox Cheek is by far my favourite dish as its main ingredient is something a little unusual. The Ox Cheek is cooked down for around 14 hours which makes the meat really tender and moist, plus combined with carrot, celeriac and dauphinoise potatoes, it is a really flavourful and hearty dish.
Favourite things about the Yorkshire Dales?
My favourite thing about The Dales is how quiet it is and the amazing views around every corner – no matter what the season. As I have a love for the outdoors, pitching-up a tent and cooking outside is one of the things I love to do when I have some spare time.