Shane Hughes, Head Chef
Our Head Chef Shane Hughes started humbly as the resident child chef at home, and it was there that his dreams of a career in food and cooking began.
While the home kitchen was a good starting point, he was eager to progress and when an opportunity arose to train at the nearby Hartwell House he jumped at the chance. From there, he spent his formative years learning the basics of French cookery in a beautiful historic hotel and spa surrounded by talented chefs.
But London beckoned, as it does for most young chefs, so he pursued and secured a position working under the legendary Michael Bourdin at the Connaught Hotel in Mayfair. He found himself embroiled in what can only be described as a military-style kitchen, learning the fundamentals of classical cuisine among a huge brigade of chefs. After a time, Shane decided that the best way to further his skills and his career would be to join a more modern and fashionable restaurant that would enable him to keep up with the constantly changing face of the culinary industry. He joined John Burton-Race at The Landmark Hotel, which was at the time one of the finest in London and a recipient of two Michelin Stars.
Moving on in search of something different, he joined the Juniper in Manchester, the North’s Most Highly awarded and quirky eatery. There he learned from a true artist chef – Paul Kitching. Before long another opportunity came along, however, and he signed up to help open a magnificent 5 star hotel in the Cotswolds – Whatley Manor. Under the guidance of Master Chef Martin Burge and the team of dedicated staff the hotel went from strength to strength and continues to be an industry leader, itself winning a second Michelin Star and a handful of other sought after awards.
After this experience, Shane had effectively paid his dues and his first opportunity as head chef came next in a Stunning Hotel called Ynyshir Hall, in the mid west of Wales. It was the only Relais & Châteaux in the Country, delivering the ultimate in customer experience. The beautiful scenery of Artists Valley and outstanding Welsh produce helped Shane to develop his distinctive style of modern world cookery without forgetting his classical roots.
After being awarded his own Michelin Star there, and having served 7 years, he decided to leave Wales to begin at Thackeray’s in May 2014 and has now put his own mark on Thackeray’s food. He has kept us constantly modern, adapting with the times, while retaining our absolute focus on using local and seasonal ingredients and never forgetting what makes Thackeray’s, Thackeray’s.