Chef revelations: Craig Mather

17 March 2017 by
Chef revelations: Craig Mather

The head chef at the Empire Room, Royal Harbour hotel in Ramsgate, Kent shares his likes and dislikes

What was your first job?
A plongeur in the Conservatory, a small restaurant in Ramsgate, Kent, when I was 14

What do you do to relax?
I spend time with my wife, Gemma, and our three young boys, Noah, Alfie and Oscar

Which is your favourite restaurant?
It must be the Empire Room as I spend 15 hours a day here. But away from work, Wheelers Oyster Bar in Whitstable is special

What's your favourite hotel?
I have special memories of Mallory Court in Leamington Spa, where I spent four years

What is your favourite drink?
A pint of local real ale

What flavour combinations do you detest?
A 1970s trifle with carton custard, packet jelly, tinned fruit and squirty cream

Which ingredient do you hate the most?

Which person in catering have you most admired?
Simon Haigh, head chef at Mallory Court. He took me in as a commis straight out of college and really developed my skills to a Michelin-star level

Cast away on a desert island, what luxury would you take?
A barrel of local Gadds' beer from the Ramsgate Brewery. It's a great drink, but I could also try using the keg to make a dingy.

What is your favourite prepared product? Cheese; I do like some after-service cheese and biscuits. I'm partial to Kentish Brie and Camembert.

If not yourself, who would you rather have been?
Jimmy Doherty of Jimmy's Farm

Tell us a secret…
I love crunchy peanut butter and Bovril, together, on toast

What irritates you most about the industry? Government cutbacks in catering colleges, which I feel, having spent five years teaching, has been one of the reasons for the lack of chefs in the industry

What's your favourite book?Where Chefs Eat by Joe Warwick

The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

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

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking