Martin Burge, former two-Michelin-starred executive chef at Whatley Manor, has been appointed culinary director of the Farncombe Estate of three hotels, near Broadway, Worcestershire.
In his new role, starting on 2 May, he will be responsible for the future development and innovation of the estate's culinary offering across the eight-bedroom Foxhill Manor, 38-bedroom, four-red-AA-star Dormy House Hotel & Spa, and 67-bedroom, three-silver-AA-star the Fish hotel. The 400-acre estate also features five shepherd huts. The culinary director position is a new role for the business.
Burge left Whatley Manor Hotel & Spa, near Malmesbury, Wiltshire, in November after nearly 14 years as executive chef, and was replaced by Niall Keating. He won the first Michelin star for the hotel in 2005, achieving a second star four years later. The hotel's Dining Room also achieved four AA rosettes and a score of eight out of 10 in the Good Food Guide during his tenure.
Earlier in his 27 year career, Burge worked at Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons in Great Milton, Oxfordshire; L'Ortolan, Shinfield, Berkshire; and Pied à Terre and the Mirabelle in London.
Burge said he was "thrilled" to be joining the Farncombe team. "In Farncombe I believe I have found a company that is the perfect match to my values and aspirations. It is hugely exciting to be part of the next chapter and together with the team see the estate reach its full culinary potential."
Andrew Grahame, chief executive, Farncombe Estate, added that he was "delighted" by Burge's appointment. "The Farncombe Estate is fiercely proud of its achievements over the past few years, creating and developing three individual and hugely successful hotels and five high-quality dining establishments. I believe that with the knowledge and enthusiasm Martin will bring to this role, we will further establish our own foodie identity and our enviable reputation will continue to grow."
The Farncombe Estate has been owned by the Danish Philip-Sorensen family since 1977. Each of the hotels have recently been refurbished at a total cost of around £16m.
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