23rd September, 2020 by Berry Head Hotel

Chefs Profile

Chef Name: Haydn Johnson
Restaurant: Berry Head Hotel

What/who inspired you to become a chef?
When I was 16, I got a job in a kitchen at a local pub. The two chefs there were called Mark & AJ. They made me want to become a chef.

Where did you train?
I trained at Truro College

What was your first job in the industry?
I worked as a Kitchen Porter

Which section of the kitchen do you most like working on and why?
I enjoy cooking fish the most. Nothing beats flipping fish over and seeing a crispy skin

What do you enjoy most about being a chef?
Camaraderie within the kitchen

In a few words, how would you define good food?
I would say that good food is enjoyment, from the moment it is put in front of you until you take the final bite

Please provide a top cooking tip for our readers
I would say my top tip would be to be patient. Sometimes we can be too quick to stir a pan or open an oven

What’s your most memorable cooking experience?
Most days working in a kitchen will give you a new experience, that is what is so great about the job. If I had to pick just one, it would be when I cooked at the Fish Stock Festival and the wind was so strong, it blew my hob out

What are your hopes for the coming year?
My hopes are to build on what we have already achieved and to ensure that both the brigade and customers are happy

To be a good chef you need to be
• Determined
• Hard working
• Have attention to detail
• Most of all a little nuts

How would you summarise your cooking style in one or two sentences?
I would have to say classic combinations

Which chefs have most inspired you, in terms of both your career and cooking style?
You take a little something from everyone you work with

Have you or your restaurant won any awards or received any notable accolades?
We won our first rosette in 2018 and got bronze in hotel of the year

In terms of produce, what do you like most about the local area?
Fish living and working in Brixham

How do you go about choosing suppliers?
Best quality at the best price

As a chef, what is your favourite time of year and why?
I would have to say spring as I like the colours it produces

What is your favourite seasonal ingredient? How you like to use it?
I love Rhubarb. I just love the tangy flavour, and nothing beats a rhubarb crumble