Matthew Weedon has taken the helm as head chef of the Feathered Nest Inn in Nether Westcote, Oxfordshire, with the aim of engaging the local community and showcasing regional produce.
National Chef of the Year winner Kuba Winkowski held the position for nine years prior to his departure in August 2019.
Winkowski’s decision to move on came after the Feathered Nest changed hands following the retirement of former owners Tony and Amanda Timmer. Adam Taylor, chief executive of Nested Hospitality, has since taken on the site.
Weedon has previously held Michelin stars at both Glenapp Castle in South Ayrshire and Lords of the Manor in Cheltenham, departing the latter in 2013.
He told The Caterer he had been a fan of the pub and restaurant before taking the position and has plans to build its local following.
Weedon explained: “We want to make it more accessible, as it's just a really nice place to come to. The view is stunning, particularly in the summer, and I don’t think there’s a place like it in the Cotswolds.”
From tomorrow the Feathered Nest Inn will offer tasting, à la carte and bar menus, with events such as community supper clubs and music nights on Sundays aimed at encouraging locals through the doors.
The chef said: “Most important is building up a returning customer base. We need to just open the doors, blow out the cobwebs and say we’re here with an offer that’s accessible for everyone.”
Weedon has spent his first months at the Feathered Nest forming relationships with local suppliers.
He added: “We’re trying to pick and choose the best ingredients around to bring in, not just to bang the local drum for the sake of it, but because the local produce is that good.
“I’m pretty humble – I just let the food do the talking. It’s all about bringing in the best of what the region has to offer and showing that off, without it being about me.”
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