Chef Director, Dinner by Heston
Originally from Dorset, Ashley Palmer-Watts’s love of food began with his love of the countryside and his familiarity with the seasons and exceptional produce of the British Isles. An after-school washing up job in a local restaurant at thirteen ignited a passion for cooking that has resulted in a career spanning almost twenty years. After leaving school, he started to work at Le Petit Canard in Dorset where he learnt the fundamental disciplines of the kitchen whilst spending most of his free time visiting producers and suppliers.
Ashley joined Heston Blumenthal at The Fat Duck in Bray in 1999 when it had just received its first star. Within two years, he was promoted to Sous Chef and he became Head Chef in 2003. Gaining their third Michelin Star in 2004. From 2008, he was the Executive Head Chef for the Fat Duck Group overseeing development at The Fat Duck and The Hinds Head in Bray, The Crown Pub in Bray and The Perfectionists’ Café at London Heathrow Terminal 2.
More recently Ashley has taken on the role of Chef Director for Dinner by Heston Blumenthal and heads up the team at Dinner by Heston Blumenthal at the Mandarin Oriental, Hyde Park and in October 2015 opened, Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in Melbourne Australia, the first restaurant to take up a permanent home outside of the United Kingdom. A third restaurant is planned for Dubai and is due to open in October 2019.
His creative eye for detail coupled with a great enthusiasm for research and British ingredients have enabled him to create the unique menu of historically inspired British dishes with Heston Blumenthal for the new restaurant.