Chef's Diary: Phil Yeomans
Chef’s Diary: Phil Yeomans is Executive Chef of Marwell Hotel
“I’m from Overton, a village in Hampshire where I grew up on the River Test. I studied hospitality and catering at Basingstoke College of Technology and I’ve been cooking for the past 20 years, working in restaurants and hotels in America, Bermuda, London and Hampshire.
“I’ve returned to my roots in Hampshire. I’ve joined Marwell Hotel and I’m loving tapping into its potential to become a great food destination, supporting local food and offering something for everyone in relaxed surroundings.
“I trained in London at Soho House, Harvey Nichols and The Dorchester. I then went on to work at The Fearrington House in North Carolina before becoming Head Chef at the age of 23 at the Coral Beach Club in Bermuda. For the last seven and a half years I worked as Andrew Mackenzie’s Head Chef at Lainston House. I learned a lot from Andy over the years and have many great memories which I’ve taken into my own kitchen now.
“My love is in Hampshire and I have been working with a lot of Hampshire food suppliers for the last ten years. Two of my favourite suppliers currently are Sue and Phil Ambrose, and Sue and Jane at Fundamentally Fungus. They are super passionate, local suppliers going the extra mile. We are lucky in Hampshire to have so many great suppliers.
“This is a great job, it’s different every day. My team are amazing and have lots of potential which is very exciting. It’s a pleasure to be able to play with food all day long. Unfortunately the biggest negative has to be the lack of passionate people coming into the industry and the shortage of good chefs within it. It’s really hard work being a chef. You really have to love what you do and be passionate about being a chef, otherwise you won’t last!
“My food is classical and not intimidating. I cook in modern ways to ensure a great end product, but flavour is everything, we want the main ingredient to speak for itself.
“My greatest achievement was having three rosettes for seven and a half years and getting a ‘5’ in the Good Food Guide. I look forward to achieving these again one day and creating one of the best food offerings in Hampshire using local food and cooking for local customers.
“At Marwell Hotel we have just started to produce a great product and we look forward to growing into a local food destination. We constantly look to improve and offer great quality at excellent value for money. You should all come and try for yourselves!”