James has achieved a number of accolades including five Rosettes and the staging of a Royal Warrant Holders Banquet for HM Queen Elizabeth during the Golden Jubilee at The London Hilton. He now joins The Walled Garden, which is based at The Barton Grange Hotel near Preston, from the Radisson Blu Edwardian hotel in Manchester where he was head chef. James will also be in charge of overseeing food operations for the Hotel’s successful banqueting, conference and wedding business.
He brings with him significant experience from posts as executive head chef at the renowned Sopwell House hotel in St Albans, Herefordshire, and executive sous chef at the London Hilton on Park Lane. At Sopwell House, James worked across all the hotel’s restaurants, outdoor catering and banqueting operations, heading-up a team of 21 and taking responsibility for menu design and creation, health and food safety, standards control, as well as overseeing food for the opening of one of the groups new five star hotels in central London.
James will be adding his own unique style to menus at The Walled Garden, which celebrate traditional food such as a Morecambe Dressed Crab and Walled Garden Lancashire Rarebit, to Breast of Goosnargh Duck and of course, a slow-cooked Lancashire Hotpot. If desserts are your down-fall, you can indulge in his homemade Sticky Toffee Pudding, Honey Parfait or classic Crème Brûlée. The Walled Garden also offers a bistro menu that changes regularly to allow James to make the most of seasonal ingredients.
James’ philosophy of using the best local produce and working in partnership with local suppliers fits well with The Barton Grange Hotel’s overall commitment to supporting Lancashire growers and producers. His menu showcases local dairy foods with Lancashire cream in its puddings and local cheeses throughout the menu, plus a variety of Lancashire meats, fish and poultry from farmers, fisheries and producers in the area.
"The Walled Garden is already well-known for its use of Lancashire's array of local and independent suppliers - something that I am keen to capture on the plate"
In addition, the restaurant has appointed Alex Graveson as restaurant manager. She joins the Hotel with extensive local restaurant experience and will lead the team in areas of training, guest service and all front of house restaurant management.
Daniel Rich, general manager of The Barton Grange Hotel, said: “James has worked at some of the most renowned hotels in London and Manchester and it’s a real pleasure to welcome him to The Barton Grange. The fact that he’s worked across lots of different departments, including banqueting, a la Carte restaurant and brasserie means his experience suits us perfectly.”
He added: “Combining that with Alex’s appointment to run front-of-house service, I am confident we have a team to deliver a fantastic overall culinary experience.”
James added: “It’s a real honour to be working at The Barton Grange and alongside its great team. The Walled Garden is already well-known for its use of Lancashire’s array of local and independent suppliers; something that I am keen to capture on the plate. The aim is an innovative collaboration of great local produce, infused with a little James Chapman culinary passion and presented with contemporary flair.”
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