With Brighton’s newest restaurant, Pascere, opening later this month, Nick Mosley caught up with head chef Johnny Stanford.
Nick Mosley: What’s your chef background?
Johnny Stanford: I’m originally from Manchester. My interests in food were sparked from helping my grandma. She still inspires me. I went to catering college while working at various restaurants in and around Manchester. I’d always leaned towards more refined food so when the opportunity came to work at Juniper, Manchester’s only Michelin star restaurant, I jumped at the chance. From then on I was hooked and worked in the Lake District and Edinburgh in Michelin star venues before moving to Sussex five years ago to work with Matt Gillan at The Pass near Horsham.
NM: How will working in a pure restaurant environment rather than hotel be different?
JS: Pure restaurants are really my background. South Lodge was my first venture into a large hotel. I’m really looking forward to getting back behind an independent restaurant. The greater freedom translates into the quality of the offering. Less restriction means we can use who we think are the best suppliers for certain produce.
NM: What attracts chefs to work in Brighton?
JS: Who doesn’t want to live by the sea? Brighton’s food scene is fast becoming one of the best in the UK. The diversity of the cuisine is incredible. For me personally I enjoy the fact that there’s always something and somewhere different to try on my days off. There’s also an amazing camaraderie among chefs.
NM: Tell us about the menu?
JS: The menu is tailored around the great produce we have. Simple flavour combinations coupled with old and new culinary techniques. Balanced dishes with flavour being of the upmost importance. We offer an all day small plates menu with classic and more unusual items. Our a la carte lunch menu is designed to be accessible and appeal to the business community as well as shoppers and tourists looking for a relaxed but refined lunch option. Our a la carte dinner menu offers more creativity with the added option of a tasting menu for a more special experience.
Read the full article on The Argus here.