Grove of Narberth executive head chef Allister Barsby will be leaving the Pembrokeshire hotel in June to open his own restaurant.
Barsby joined the 26-bedroom, four-red-AA-star hotel in January 2016. He and his partner Alice Bussi, food and beverage manager across the Seren Collection (which, as well as the Grove, also includes Coast in Saundersfoot and Beach House in Swansea), will be departing to open their own restaurant in Barsby's home county of Kent, in the small coastal market town of Hythe.
Acorn Award-winner Barsby retained the restaurant's three AA rosettes over the years; while Bussi launched the Beach House in June 2016 and was awarded the Food & Beverage Manager of the Year Award at the 2018 Hotel Cateys.
Managing director of the Seren Collection, Neil Kedward, said: "It has been a pleasure working with Alice and Allister. The couple have had a hugely positive impact on our business over the last three years. We are delighted with all that Allister has achieved with the food offering at the Grove and Alice has been dynamic force in our business launching both the Beach House Oxwich and Artisan Rooms casual dining restaurant at the Grove.
"We would like to thank them both for all their hard work and commitment whilst they have been with us in Pembrokeshire and sincerely wish them both all the best in their new restaurant venture. Hythe are blessed to have such a talented couple coming to their town to run what we know for sure will be a fabulous restaurant."
The Seren Collection has now started a search for a new executive head chef to oversee the hotel's fine dining Fernery restaurant and Artisan rooms, which were refurbished in spring 2018 by Martin Hulbert.
Further investment in the kitchens is planned and Barsby's replacement will be given the chance to "reinvent the Fernery and Artisan Rooms offering and be instrumental in the future direction of the hotel and restaurant".
Thomas Ferrante, who was appointed general manager at the hotel this month following the promotion of Louise Lewis, said: "We are searching for the very best who can see Grove and Pembrokeshire as a place to settle in the longer term so that Grove and exceptional Welsh produce becomes truly synonymous with the quality of their food and skill level."Get The Caterer every week on your smartphone, tablet, or even in good old-fashioned hard copy (or all three!).