Kevin Tickle has stepped down as head chef of the Michelin-starred the Forest Side hotel in Grasmere, Cumbria, to embark on new projects.
He will initially spend time with his growing young family before moving on to the next stage of his career and “exciting projects that lay ahead”.
The Forest Side opened in February 2016 as the third property in the Wildsmith Hotels collection, which also comprise two other Cumbrian hotels: Hipping Hall in Kirby Lonsdale and Ryebeck in Bowness-on-Windermere. Wildsmith Hotels was founded by chemistry graduate-turned-hotelier Andrew Wildsmith.
The Forest Side swiftly became a hit with critics for the inventive food Tickle created from carefully sourced and foraged ingredients. It received three AA rosettes seven months after opening and a Michelin star soon after.
In 2017 the Forest Side was awarded four AA rosettes and the following year was ranked 27 in the Waitrose Good Food Guide.
Tickle said: “This has been a long and rewarding journey for the myself and my team. I am really proud of what we have achieved in the last few years and I would like to thank all the suppliers, staff and guests for their support.
“I have been blessed with the most hard-working and dedicated team of chefs and couldn’t have done it without them – thanks guys.”
Alasdair Elwick, general manager at the Forest Side, thanked Tickle for his time at the hotel and added that he had taken the restaurant “from strength to strength with his innovative use of Cumbrian produce”.
He continued: “Details of a new head chef appointment will be announced in due course. Senior sous chef Ian Waller and the team will continue to deliver the modern cuisine inspired by the landscape of the Lakes which we have become acclaimed for here at the Forest Side – a reputation which we will continue to nourish and develop. We would like to wish Kevin every success in his future ventures.”