New Opening


I thought I’d take a small break from the Bake off, not meaning that I won’t mention it, but just to give you an incite to recent events.

As you may or may not know from my social media that I’m currently involved in a new restaurant at the resort with Head Chef Aaron Darnley. This is something special and looks to be a great success,

but I had forgotten how hard an opening is and the pressures to “get things right”.

It’s not just about getting it right for you the consumer but for us as chefs also, this in itself brings added pressure to an already pressurized job. Openings aren’t for everyone, as they can be daunting and do not always run to plan, you also have to remember that you are at work with many different kinds of people (designers, backers, builders, chefs, front of house and the list can go on), for this you have to be very adaptable and have an open mind, especially in a corporate sense and environment. With all of this taken into account plus the pressure of staying in budget throughout can be mind boggling and frustrating at the best of time, but, and this is a big “but”, it’s not all rough sailing. We as chefs love a challenge and there is no better stage than a new restaurant. Here we can make a mark and it’s our chance to make a great impression on the public. My favorite thing is to develop new dishes, create menu ideas and testing them on the team and family. We tried so many many different dishes before we opened Sky By The Water at Resorts World Birmingham until we found a selection of perfection.


I’m a huge believer in big punchy flavours and getting the most out of the ingredients you have in front of you. So many times have I been disappointed by the dishes that have been served to me in supposed “high end restaurants” simply because they lack flavour or seasoning. Style over substance, well you need both style and substance with bags of flavour. So, as you may have seen from Instagram we’ve all been hard at work trying to get things right, hopefully we’ve done just that, the public will surely tell us right or wrong in any case.

It’s has been good for the pastry team also to get back into the restaurant after the demise of Robata Bar And Grill a couple of years ago (not to say we haven’t been busy) as I believe that platted desserts allow the chefs imagination to flow as do new openings. These are blank canvases for us to paint, and I being an artist, relish in this.

After a few hiccups we got over our creative differences and pushed forward to ensure that the opening would be a success and something myself, Aaron Darnley, his team and also my team can be proud of. I must also mention our marketing team who have helped get things right and ready for the launch and are still continuing the push. The restaurant is now open for dinner and afternoon tea, we look forward to see you all soon!