Carl Shillingford

Started in pot washing in kitchens when I was 13, by the age of 16 was cooking 300 steaks a night in a steak house grill.
Worked in London for four years at Capitol hotel (1 star Michelin) , The Ivy and The Caprice.

Not speaking a word of French I took myself to Cote 'd azur with a one way ticket, 2 suitcases and 8 hundred quid in my back pocket. I went there as an arrogant young chef and came back a cook. Worked at hotel casino royal (4 star), then did a season at l'Ossis restaurant (2 star Michelin), both in a little village just along the coast from Cannes.

Went to work at Waterside Inn Bray (3 star Michelin). Worked all sections as chef de partie. Planned to go to Italy, took lessons for a year on my one day off, to have the chef tell me I was to go to Paris (did not argue).
Worked at a charcuterie for 1 year (terrines, pâté & hams).
Then did 18 months at Pierre Gagnaire's restaurant at hotel Balzac (3 star Michelin).
I was brought  back to England by Michel Roux to be his head chef at the White hart Nayland for 4 years.

Being a non driver & if i am honest, not really being that bothered about visiting the local towns after Paris, I stayed in the village (about 10 years).
I mean I got out about once every 3 months for the afternoon,  normally to buy my comics (keen collector), but apart from that I would go for long walks in & around the environs. As a cook I was immediately attracted to things I could cook or preserve.
Leaving behind the Michelin stars I decided to look for more natural foods that I could find & serve to my clientele.

Working along those lines I found a job at the local pub run by farmers.
Worked at the Anchor at Nayland (farm to plate).
They had practically everything from cows, pigs, sheep &goats. To a large kitchen garden ploughed by Suffolk punch horses. Adding to that my love of natures foods, we produced some out standing country pub dish's.

After six years I felt confident enough to start my own business producing terrines, pates, smoke house produce, foraged produce and country meals.
Seasonal Suffolk has been trading now for one year. We sell our produce at farmers markets, butchers, wine shops , farm shops & online.

I look forward to teaching people about the food that we all can find out there & most importantly how to cook it.