His culinary creations have been savoured by celebrities. Now, Simon Wood is bringing his expertise to Ilkley’s Clevedon Restaurant.
After a culinary profession spanning more than three decades, Simon Wood from Darlington has been appointed head chef at the Clevedon Restaurant, Ben Rhydding.
“It’s like a five-star hotel and what a stage to be able to cook on – it’s the best of the best,” said Simon.
Located within Ilkley’s Audley Village, the restaurant seats around 50 people and a further 10 families can be accommodated within the manicured outside space which boasts views of the Wharfe Valley.
Working with his team of assistant chefs and front of house staff, Simon aims to create dishes that are ‘light, modern and innovative’.
“I am cooking what is current, but I’ve also got my mind on what will be current in three months’ time as well,” he explains. “I just have a passion for what I do – I come home from work and I immediately go in the kitchen and grab a cookery book and have an idea. I never really switch off!”
Having worked alongside renowned chefs in restaurants across the UK, Simon has also had the chance to cook for some famous faces. Writer and broadcaster Melvyn Bragg wrote a letter of appreciation to Simon, for looking after him – and his guests – during his role as Chancellor of the University of Leeds.
The Clevedon Restaurant hosts business lunches, live music and themed evenings which are available for residents, local businesses and the general public to enjoy.
Of Simon’s appointment at the Clevedon Restaurant, Jen Hill-Wickham, general manager of Audley Clevedon, said: “Simon has a wealth of experience and is all about playing to his audience. He excels at live demonstrations which we are looking forward to rolling out for residents and customers to create exceptional dining and entertainment experiences for groups, families, business parties, residents and community organisations.”
She added: “I am incredibly excited with this latest development and am looking forward to welcoming in old and new guests to enjoy this new, refreshed and professional culinary Clevedon Restaurant experience.”