Scotland’s top young chef Adam Newth, about to launch two new ventures and triple his staff, has called on others in the restaurant business to put themselves in the limelight by competing for industry awards.
The 26-year-old Chef-Proprietor of the two AA Rosette Tayberry restaurant in Broughty Ferry near Dundee, who took the inaugural Young Chef of the Year title in the Catering Scotland (CIS) Awards in 2016, is due to take over the catering at Kinnettles Castle at Forfar following its transformation into an exclusive use wedding and private events venue.
In the Spring he will launch a second Tayberry restaurant in the new Kinnettles hotel in St Andrews.
“Winning a competition gives your business a buzz,” he commented. “It gives you the reassurance you’re doing a lot of things right and indicates to the outside world you’re a trusted brand. You get the wind behind you and it boosts your profile. Articles go in the press and social media, and readers say ‘I must try that place!’”
Success certainly hasn’t come on a plate for Newth who began restaurant work preparing salads and making sandwiches in a cafe in his home town of Arbroath at the age of 14.
Confessing to not having done well at school, he took day release classes in cooking at Angus College before leaving home at 16 to work as a commis chef at former Rangers Football Club Chairman David Murray’s Circus restaurant in Edinburgh.
Restaurants where he then honed his skills included The Seafood Restaurant in St Andrews under multi award-winner Craig Millar (now running 16 West End at St Monans) and Angels with Bagpipes in Edinburgh’s Royal Mile. It was a long way from the Bellrock chippy in Arbroath to Michelin-starred restaurants The Kitchen and No. 1 @ The Balmoral in Edinburgh and Martin Wishart’s at Cameron House on Loch Lomond.
When he opened Castlehill, the city’s first 2 Rosette restaurant, one restaurant critic wrote: “Adam Newth may be the best thing to hit Dundee since Desperate Dan!”
His other awards have included Young Scottish Chef and Young Scottish Seafood Chef of the Year at ScotHot in 2013 and Sustainable Trout Chef of the Year in 2015.
His new St Andrews and Forfar outlets will mean almost tripling his current dozen staff.
“Winning awards has a positive impact on staff too,” said Newth who married Rachel last September near Disney World in Florida. “Even if the award is given to me, they know they’ve played their parts.”
“I’m excited about the new openings,” he added. “They’re different in scope but both will reflect our classic and modern techniques and passion for using the best and freshest ingredients we can get hold of.”
At such a relatively tender age, what’s the secret of his successes?
“Well,” he responds quickly. “I don’t sleep much and drink a lot of coffee! The truth is it’s been due to luck and a lot of hard graft.”
As Scotland’s annual competition combining the catering, hospitality and tourism industries, the CIS Excellence Awards are seen as the ultimate accolade for Scottish hotels, restaurants, gastro pubs, chefs and other organisations.
Entries close on 10 March. The Awards presentation dinner will be held on Thursday 25 May at the Glasgow Hilton. To enter see www.cis-excellenceawards.com.