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Revelations: Tom Westerland, head chef, Lucknam Park hotel and spa, Colerne, Chippenham

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Revelations: Tom Westerland, head chef, Lucknam Park hotel and spa, Colerne, Chippenham

What was your first job?

As a pot wash on Sundays in my local pub. I was 15

What do you normally have for breakfast?

Coffee and a sausage and egg bagel – see if you can guess where

What do you do to relax?

A few drinks and some food in the beer garden

Which is your favourite restaurant?

The Coach in Marlow, Buckinghamshire – you can’t beat the chicken kiev with cauliflower cheese

What’s your favourite hotel?

Dormy House in the Cotswolds

What is your favourite drink?

The classic end-of-service Peroni

What is your favourite food?

I’m a sucker for a slow-cooked barbecue feast

Which ingredient do you hate the most?

Grouse

What flavour combinations do you detest?

Chocolate and chilli

What do you always carry with you?

My trusty Sharpie

How would you describe your desk?

Desk? More like a broken fridge

Which person in catering have you most admired?

Has to be my mentor, Hywel Jones, executive chef at Lucknam Park. I wouldn’t be where I am today without his guidance and patience

Which person gave you the greatest inspiration?

I grew up watching Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall on River Cottage, and I always thought his ethos on local food was inspirational

Cast away on a desert island, what luxury would you take?

My Nespresso

If not yourself, who would you rather have been?

Jeremy Wade from River Monsters. I think I could swap cooking for fishing all day

Describe your ultimate nightmare?

Going back to a kitchen without induction

When and where was your last holiday?

August 2018 on the Isle of Wight – the yearly fishing holiday with my old man

Tell us a secret…

I used to have shoulder-length, curly hair. I thought it looked good…

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