Thursday, 23 July 2015

Has Hayfield Manor's Head Chef cracked the recipe to embracing life's challanges?

We are delighted to introduce our Executive Head Chef Mark Staples who is unassumingly proving that you actually can have your cake and eat it since his arrival at Hayfield Manor.  

A little bit about the man

Mark commenced his culinary career in Scotland at the renowned Gleneagles Hotel, where he débuted as a 1st Commis. Motivated to evolve his skill set further, Mark embarked on the life changing move to London’s Teatro Restaurant where he worked alongside celebrity and Michelin star chefs including Gordon Ramsey & Stuart Gillies.  Mark met his Irish wife and (naturally!) a move to Ireland followed.  Mark’s talent and determination allowed him to progress from the bottom up at The Merrion hotel in Dublin to become Executive Sous Chef, a post which he held for 9 years.

And this is where our story really begins

Challenge 1 – moving house and home:  With Mark’s wife, Deirdre, being a native of Cork, a move Leeside was of course inevitable.  Deirdre has helped Mark ease into Corconian living by offering the odd translation and introducing him to the joys of Barry’s tea.  

Challenge 2 – a new job- By amazing coincidence, Deirdre’s mother owns the well-known shop, The College Nook, which is located on College Road, literally at the end of Hayfield Manor’s drive.  So with mother-in-law conveniently located on his doorstep, Mark joined our team at Hayfield Manor in November 2014 in his first role as Executive Head Chef.  Since joining Mark has focused on building, training and developing a brigade of 24 chefs through his own personal passion and expertise.  It is said that a good chef has to be a manager, a businessman as well as an exceptional cook and Mark certainly exceeds this expectation.  

Challenge 3 – a new baby:  Having just settled in his role and his new home in Cork, Mark, Deirdre and their 4 year old son, Conor have recently welcomed their new arrival, baby Aoife, into the family.  So what keeps Mark’s afloat in the soup of such a busy life:  

1. Taking every free moment to enjoy life with the family.  Mark is happiest when strolling around the English Market and rediscovering, through Conor’s eyes, all the fresh and authentic flavours on display and, with renewed enthusiasm, translating them into his outstanding culinary creations.

 2. Swimming as often as possible to clear the head and strengthen the body.

3. Drinking lots of tea! A new job, a new baby and a new county – Mark Staples certainly has embraced quite a challenge and is coping amiably.  The proof is in the pudding, and the entrée and the starters…and we hope you’ll agree that Mark is doing an outstanding job. 

See, taste and savour by sampling Mark’s creations in Orchids at Hayfield Manor and in Perrotts Garden Bistro.    

To view Orchids at Hayfield Manor’s Menu, please click here.

To view Perrotts Garden Bistro Menu, please click here.

We shall look forward to welcoming you to Hayfield Manor very soon.