From: South Devon
Job: Executive chef, The Treby Arms
“My wife and I live in Sparkwell, Devon, where I first went to school. I grew up in Ivybridge, five miles away, so have always been a country boy!
“My mum has been a chef for most of her working life, as a household cook for nuns in a nunnery, so I have always had a huge passion for food since a very young age.
“We always had vegetables growing and fresh food on the table. It was a real celebration in our house when you sat down for dinner.
“I have one brother that’s in the army, and I had another brother that passed away at 16. He had muscular dystrophy, there was quite a bit of heartache when I was young.
“I met my wife Clare about ten years ago, we’ve been married two weeks! Thanks to MasterChef I had to cut my honeymoon short, we spent most of it with a pad and pen writing recipes!
“I currently run my own local pub in Sparkwell, with my amazing wife and team. My passion is to please my customers.”
“My main culinary influences have been the Roux brothers, Tom Kerridge and my brilliant team at the Treby Arms.”
The MasterChef experience
“It was absolutely amazing to get to the finals, I’m very proud of myself. Such a great feeling, it still hasn’t sunk in yet – as we would say down in Plymouth ‘handsome!’
“The most challenging point in the competition for me was during the semi-finals going head to head against Keri. Knowing that it could potentially be my last dish cooked in the competition – those judges are hard to please, so it needs to be bang on! The moment they told us we were both going through to the finals was very emotional.”
“It hasn’t been a bad year at all, I got the pub, I got married, now if I was to win MasterChef: The Professionals it will probably be the best year of my life!
“My ambition is to continue to run a successful business, and to show that a pub can flourish just like a fine dining restaurant.
”I hope to continue to make my business strive, and who knows, one day we could be a “star” in the making. My motto is ‘work work work… with and maybe a little play from time to time!”