Q&A: CHEF ADAM POOLE, WAIN-Y-CLARE

Good food excites me and getting to know talented chefs behind the scenes is the favourite part of my job. I am thrilled to chat to Chef Adam Poole, Head Chef at Wain-Y-Clare who is creating waves in the industry through his stunning classical dishes with a contemporary twist. Chef Adam Poole is one of those rare individuals whose passion shines through in every syllable uttered. Which is why I have earmarked Wain-Y-Clare for a visit this summer. To find out more about the chef with magic fingers, read on.

Tell us a little about yourself.

I am someone who is very committed to the job I do, always looking for new ideas whether that is in books, on the Internet or going around other restaurants.

How did you come to be Head Chef at Wain-Y-Clare?

That’s a funny story actually. I used to work for the owner about 7 years ago, he saw that I was doing freelance at the time and got in touch. After visiting the place, I moved within a month, and the rest is history.

Chicken & duck liver parfait on bed of rocket, red onion marmalade basil oil, homemade rye wafers

Chicken & duck liver parfait on bed of rocket, red onion marmalade basil oil, homemade rye wafers

How do you want to make diners feel when they tuck into your dishes?

I always try and take them back to when they were young. I want them to feel at home and have a fantastic meal. I always want them to enjoy the experience of trying new flavours and new textures.

Have you always been passionate about food?

Not always, but I did enjoy the creating aspect. When I left school, I went into engineering and did a degree. I did take a weekend pot-wash job when I was in my early twenties and that was where it all began. I would clear pot-wash and then be asking the chefs what they were making, always watching and taking notes. It wasn’t until I started working for a very talented chef that my passion increased to the point where I’m now always thinking about menu ideas. Always.

Chicken liver parfait on bed of house leaves, homemade piccalilli, wholemeal wafers

Chicken liver parfait on bed of house leaves, homemade piccalilli, wholemeal wafers

What inspires you in the kitchen and how long does it take to create a menu (starter, main dessert)?

Everything inspires me in the kitchen including fellow chefs’ ideas, going back to classics and revamping them for the modern age. Prep time is a couple of days for most of the elements that I put on the specials boards, but cooking time is never any less than 15 minutes unless I have certain proteins on (giving the resting time it obviously takes longer).

 

Chicken, black-pudding & apricot-ballotine, fondant potato, charred spring-onions, mushroom ketchup, finished with madeira & juniper reduction

Chicken, black-pudding & apricot ballotine, fondant potato, charred spring-onions, mushroom ketchup, finished with madeira & juniper reduction

Cookery shows like MasterChef and Saturday Kitchen are game-changers; it is now very fashionable to get creative in the kitchen. What do you think of this cooking / baking revolution?

It is fantastic to get people inspired in their own kitchens and to try new things, but they do sometimes forget about the basics.

What cooking trends have you encountered this year? Any new ingredients you can tell us about, that you love working with?

I try and stay simple with my food. I am going to pick it up soon, but I like the rustic homely style with lots of flavour and texture.

Pan seared duck-breast, duchess potatoes, asparagus, peas, burnt orange segments, finished with orange & thyme-jus

Pan seared duck-breast, duchess potatoes, asparagus, peas, burnt orange segments, finished with orange & thyme jus

What would be your last supper?

That’s a hard one. I think I would love to have a tasting menu at Manchester House.

Are there any chefs that inspire you, or whom you admire?

Every chef inspires me, but the ones I admire the most are Aiden Byrne, Mark Greenaway and Heston Blumenthal.

Pan seared hake fillet, parsley & wild rocket vichyssoise, garnished with blanched radish

Pan seared hake fillet, parsley & wild rocket vichyssoise, garnished with blanched radish

Do you have any cookery books?

None as of yet but this is a goal that I’m working towards.

Food critics – are they friend, or foe?

To me every customer is a food critic as they pass on whether it was a good experience or a bad one. So, the food leaves the kitchen as perfect as I can get it for every customer.

Thank you for your time Chef Adam Poole. If you wanted to taste his impressive dishes, reserve a table at Wain-Y-Clare by going to the website, or via Facebook.

 

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