Lots of our guests come and stay at a Sleeps12 large group holiday house to celebrate a special occasion; they gather together their best friends and closest family and bring them down to our luxury group accommodation in the West Country to celebrate in style. And what better way to do so than by tucking into a scrumptious top-notch feast created and cooked by a professional chef in the comfort of your big holiday house? We work with highly reputed caterers who will provide an outstanding service to our guests and we’d like to introduce you to the latest to join our ranks – Kitchen Consultant Chef, Joe Draper.
Joe works as an independent private chef and consultant with sustainability at the core of his ethos and whilst he’s busy with the specialist advisory side of his business, he loves getting out and about to private functions, meeting people and cooking for them. He’s got some seriously impressive credentials behind him so you know he’s going to be good! He’ll cook for any occasion, and well worth remembering is that this is one sure way to impress your key clients on a corporate hospitality break.
Joe is a Devon boy, it’s where he grew up and where he still lives so he mostly works within the South West area but will travel all over the UK. His first foray into cooking, at the tender age of 15, was at a country inn near Totnes, which then lead to him running the kitchen at another well known pub/restaurant on Dartmoor. When he was 18 he took himself off to London where he spent time cooking with the likes of Marco Pierre White and John Christophe Novelli and working as senior sous chef at the world famous One Aldwych Hotel on The Strand. That was followed by a stint all over Europe with the Ferrari F1 team catering for drivers and VIPs before he returned to the big smoke to cook at the exclusive Tramp club in Piccadilly.
Joe had a hankering to return to his Devon roots and secured a post as senior head chef with River Cottage, taking on the responsibility of opening their restaurant in Plymouth, along with two more of their prestigious sites. Joe had a whale of a time with River Cottage, being in his element with the strong ethics of sustainability, supporting local communities and working with the seasons. He’d always had a dream of going it alone and by now the time was right; off he went and since then he’s gone from strength to strength, carried along by a smashing personality, extensive knowledge and an undeniable talent for cooking – and of course, a lot of hard work.
He places a big emphasis on using high quality ingredients – wherever possible everything must be local, seasonal and organically grown, or raised and foraged in the wild. So whatever you’re celebrating, whether it’s a milestone birthday, a special anniversary, an engagement, a hen weekend or a graduation, give Joe a call; have a chat with him (he’s a lovely guy!), take a look at his menus to get an idea of what he does and get him in to put together something very special for you. He’ll tailor things to your every whim no matter what you want – tasting menus, sharing platters, canapes, buffets, afternoon tea, wood fired pizzas or a 3-4 course dinner.
So, what mouth watering delights can you expect? To give you an idea, we’ve snatched a few dishes from Joe’s menu and just reading it has got our tastebuds leaping with delight. Starters of Portland dressed crab, Virgin Mary jelly, polenta crisp and cucumber salsa, or Pea & watercress velouté, smoked ham hock fritter and lemon oil… On the mains are Slow cooked pork in black treacle, smoked carrot puree, crushed new season potatoes with spring onion, beetroot relish, grilled broccoli & almonds, red wine jus, and, check this out - Herb & nettle crusted baked Pollock with artichoke, fennel, sumac & blood orange salad, potato rosti, samphire & smoked almond aioli.
Round it off with something exquisite like Citrus posset, orange jelly, meringue and lemon Verbena shortbread or Blackberries in quince gin, orange labneh, almond & honeycomb crumbs fumble. Foodie heaven. World class cuisine in the relaxed surroundings of your Sleeps12 holiday cottage.
What’s amazing is how Joe makes it all look so effortless; he’ll bring well versed staff with him, the food will be utterly divine, and the kitchen will be left all shiny and sparkling clean. Having Joe Draper cooking for you is something you will not forget in a hurry – if there’s an occasion that’s worth celebrating, or if you want to show those important clients how serious you are, it’s worth booking Joe to cater for you. We’ll certainly raise a glass to that.