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Cork Independent

Lifestyle & Leisure

King of the kitchen

Wednesday, 4th September, 2019 4:45pm

After beginning his education in CIT, Executive Head Chef of The Kinglsey, Tim Daly, spent a number of years in Ireland and France learning his trade before returning to his home county to take up his current role in The Kingsley. Tim spoke to the Cork Independent about life as a chef in Cork:

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself?

I grew up in Skibbereen in West Cork. My parents had a grocery shop in the centre of town where I learned about work ethic through helping out in the evenings and weekends. I was always into food even from a young age, always trying out recipes in magazines and cookbooks and cooking dinner at home for the family. I started working in a local restaurant at a kitchen porter and haven't looked back since.

Background of employment?

I trained in CIT with a diploma in Professional Cookery which was run as a CERT course. From there I worked in some 4 and 5-star properties around Ireland before heading off to France where I was fortunate to get a job in a 3 Michelin Star restaurant. I then returned to Ireland where I took up the role of senior sous chef leading on to executive head chef in some properties in Wicklow. The position of Executive Head Chef at The Kingsley came up while I was back working in the south of France, and as I was eager to try and get back to my roots, I applied for the role. I flew over on my day off for an interview and was offered the role.

How long are you working in the industry?

I started in the industry as a 16 year old, so I guess that this year is my twenty-fifth year!

What is it like day to day in The Kingsley?

It’s a fast-paced environment, The Kingsley is a busy hotel with a number of different food outlets. Afternoon tea and lunch are served in The K Lounge which has magnificent views overlooking the River Lee. Dinner is served in The Springboard Restaurant with a casual dining menu. We also cater for weddings, barbecues, and family occasions such as christenings and family get-togethers.

Favourite thing about working as a chef?

I guess my favourite thing about working as a chef is the creativity and diversity of the position. I love working with food and I try to be as hands-on as I can, also I enjoy working with people that have a passion for what they do and I am lucky to be part of a great team in The Kingsley.

How many staff work with you?

Currently I am working with a full team, with 17 chefs and seven kitchen porters. It has become increasingly difficult to recruit chefs with a shortage in the industry. I do think that the industry is changing for the better but more needs to happen to make it more appealing for new people coming into the industry.

Why do you think you are successful in your job?

I suppose there would be a number of reasons why I have been successful in the role with number one being a passion for what I do. It really is something that I enjoy and get great satisfaction from. Also, the great work ethic that was installed in me from a young age from my parents. I do believe that this has really stood to me over the years.

What changes and challenges have come up in current role?

Since commencing my current role, I guess one of the biggest challenges has been to build a strong team in the kitchen, I'm a firm believer that you are nothing without a great team by your side. It’s taken time and I'm very lucky to have talented and hard-working people to work alongside.

What’s your proudest moment?

There are many moments that have made me proud in my career but it's the simplest things that make the difference. To see someone that has started off as an apprentice given an opportunity and grow into someone with a real flare and diligence. Also, it's great when we get positive feedback from guests that have stayed and dined with us.

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