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The Restaurant-Bar Chain Chef

28 July 2005

The Restaurant-Bar Chain Chef
John Molmer, 33

What? Group executive head chef
Which company? The Fat Cat Group (Bluu, Fat Cat Café Bars, Red House)
Salary range: about £35,000-£45,000 basic

Have you been in this job long? Well, I joined the Fat Cat Group about four-and-a-half years ago as head chef when they opened Bluu in Nottingham - and when they grew, I grew. I was promoted to group executive head chef a few weeks ago and I am now in charge of 13 Fat Cat Café bars, five Bluus and the Red House

What does your job entail? As it's so new I am spending a lot of time in the car visiting all the sites. I'm working a 70-hour, six-day week, but that will calm down. Eventually, I want to convert our big kitchen in Stoke into a cookery school and have a trainee in each site so we can promote from within.

But don't you do that already? Yes, but the company is going to keep on expanding so we need to maintain a strong team. The aim is for 10 Bluus ą and more Fat Cats will open as and when.

How did you get where you are today? I learnt to cook way back on a YTS training scheme at Swallow Hotels, earning £25 a week. I have worked all over since then. Besides a couple of stints at Swallow I have worked at Ballathie House, Risley Hall, for instance - I even went out to a job in Bermuda for 11 months.

What have been the high points of your career to date? Working in Bermuda was great, it really broadened my horizons and was a very relaxed way of living but the fact Fat Cat offered me this promotion in charge of 19 sites shows they have faith in me.

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Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

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