Name - Jacob Whitson
Address- Grove Cottage, Wells Road, Chilcompton,
Radstock, Somerset, BA3 4ET
Tel: (01761) 233926
Mobile: 07891 864061
09/00-09/03 Elective Home Education
I undertook studies in all GCSE areas as guided by the Somerset Education Dept as well as following my
own passion for food and cooking.
09/03 –06/05 NVQ2 Culinary Skills
City of Bath College, Avon Street, Bath
Here I gained a NVQ level 2 in Food Preparation and Cooking, a NVQ level 2 in Food Service and
Hospitality, a Foundation Food Hygiene Certificate, a level 2 Diploma in pastry (passed with credit) and a
certificate in Pan Asian Cookery. During my course I also did paid work at the college on Christmas
functions, helping prepare, cook and serve food for around 300 covers.
It was here I learnt most of my basic technical skills and knowledge of health, safety and hygiene in the
kitchen. It was a 5 day a week course, 4 of which were practical lessons in which we prepared and served
lunch for the restaurant (Anywhere from 20 – 80 covers). The College also arranged work placements in
Bath for the students, mine were –
11/03 Bath Spa Hotel, Bath
I undertook a professional work experience placement at the Bath Spa Hotel where I gained experience in
food service and hospitality.
02/04 Francis Hotel, Bath
I undertook professional work experience placement in the kitchens of the Francis Hotel where I gained
experience in food preparation and cooking in a busy environment.
11/04 Bath Rugby Club, Bath
During this work experience placement I gained knowledge in preparing food that took into account the
nutritional needs of professional athletes.
03/05 - 07/05 Babington House, Nr Frome, Somerset - 01373 812266
Position Held – Commis Chef
I worked on the starter section preparing soups, salads, pizzas, sandwiches, cured meat and fish dishes,
terrines and other snacks and starters. I was often in charge of the section on the busy lunch and dinner
services when we would usually serve around 100-120 covers. It was here that I learned how to organize my
section for maximum efficiency, how to organize cheques and how to work quickly, calmly and tidily under
pressure in a small kitchen.
It was also here that I gained the confidence and learnt how to invent dishes for the menu from the high
quality vegetables, herbs, fruit (sometimes picked from the house’s own walled garden), fresh fish (from
Devon) and local organic meat that we had at our disposal. We also occasionally bought whole animals in
and so I gained more knowledge about what to do with the cheaper cuts of meat and offal, as well as the
fillets and loins.
10/05 – 10/06 Worth Eating, Friars Oven Farm, West Compton
Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 4PD - 0777 9143440 www.wortheating.co.uk
Position Held – Baker/ Pastry Chef
I worked in a small independent business producing very high quality quiches, flans, tarts, tortes,
meringues, cheesecakes and soups from high quality ingredients to supply to Somerset farmers markets,
delis, and pubs. We used organic flour (from Shipton Mill), Sandridge Farmhouse free-range bacon,
Freedom farm eggs and our butter and cream was locally sourced.
I worked closely with Julian Langdon (Proprietor) in the development of a range of products which ended up
winning both Gold and Bronze Taste of the West awards and getting a recommendation by Rose Prince in
her book, Savvy Shopper.
I learnt a lot especially from the many trials and experiments we had to conduct to get our products to be
consistently perfect. Julian also does freelance catering, and I worked with him on a buffet style meal for 150
people at a wedding reception (See menu below).
05/06 - River Cottage HQ, Lower Atrim Farm, Bridport, Dorset / Park Farm ,Axminster, Devon
Position Held - Chef
I work on a freelance basis with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Gill Mellor at the prestigious River Cottage
HQ working on many of the events, helping to serve elegantly presented, highly seasonal four and five
course menus to around fifty diners.
10/06 –06/07 The Electric Palace, The Old Cinema, Bridport
Position Held – Sous Chef
In October 2006 I became involved in the Old Cinema project in Bridport. The derelict 1920s cinema was
renovated into a modern bar, restaurant and theatre, whilst still retaining a lot of its original art deco features.
After helping with the renovation, when the restaurant opened in November I became Sous Chef next to
head chef Gideon Hitchin (formerly of River Cottage). All the animals - pigs, lambs and deer, were bought in
whole and butchered by us. Bread was baked fresh daily. Stocks, gravies, jus, hams and sausages were all
made from scratch, by us. Everything was brought straight in by fishermen or farmers. The restaurant held
around 45 diners, and we worked principally on our own, sometimes with a kitchen porter/commis chef,
doing 70-90 hour weeks, mostly 6 day weeks.
I loved working at the Palace, but in the end, when the cinema opened for screening in the evenings, the
restaurant had to become more informal, and only opened for coffee, cakes and light lunches. The hours
available became too low to sustain the bills I was paying to live near the restaurant, and I took the
opportunity to break into a new career by going to Japan to research a book about the regional food there
Free-lance Chef Work -
I have also freelanced doing my own high end dinner parties and small functions using only locally sourced,
seasonal high quality ingredients, organic if possible. See menus below.
I also have experience working with Thomas Hunt (www.finocatering.co.uk ) doing high quality festival and
wedding catering for large numbers of people (150-600) working especially on the barbecue/grill, cooking
Lebanese style kebabs, fresh fish and pitta breads to order.
Other Projects and Demonstrations –
I have gained lots of unique experience from other projects I have either created or been involved in. These
I arranged a demonstration at City of Bath College where I showed the students how to make
brawn and black pudding. I believe it is important as a chef to be able to show respect to an animal
that has died to feed you, by making good use of every part of it.
I made Black puddings and Boudin Noir from scratch for a photo-shoot and article in Dorset
Magazine for Denise and Ian Bell of Heritage Prime.
Home curing, processing and offal cookery – A really passionate interest of mine, I have made from
scratch – guanciale, pickled ox tongue, dry cure bacon, smoked bacon, smoked mackerel, kippers,
salted sprats, confit (goose), giblet stuffed neck of goose, rilletes, rillons, black pudding, salami,
chorizo and brawn and cooked tripe, heart, liver, brain, trotters, bone marrow and ears.
I keep rare-breed chickens (mainly Dorkings), which produce outstanding meat and eggs. I have
taught myself how to slaughter, eviscerate, pluck and hang a chicken and have also eviscerated,
skinned and jointed rabbits, lambs, pigs and deer.
Vegetable, fruit and herb gardening.
Writing has always been a keen interest and hobby of mine but I have only recently begun writing
professionally. To date my work has been principally editing food-related web content. I am currently writing
a travel/food book about Japan based on my travel and research there during the summer of ’07.
Certificate of Competence in Proofreading (awarded by Chapterhouse publishing)
Foundation food hygiene
NVQ level 2 Food service and Hospitality
NVQ level 2 Food preparation and cooking
Level 2 diploma in Pastry – Passed with Credit
Key skills level 2 IT
Level 2 Pan Asian Cookery – 2 exam papers - passed 98% and 100%
The Electric Palace Brasserie – 01308 428354
River Cottage HQ - 01308 420020
Worth Eating – 0777 9143440
Babington house – (01373) 812266
City of Bath College – (01225) 328506
Kean Maslen (Tutor)
Dinner Party for 6 people (My Event) 4 Feb
French Laundry Style Local Brown trout tartar with red onion crème fraiche in a savoury tuile cornet
Early spring soup of Chilcompton nettles and watercress with a splash of local Guernsey double cream
Palate Freshener – English pear sorbet
Grilled and roasted Tamworth pork loin (with bay and cider vinegar) with celeriac mash and black kale
Old Burford – an organic, soft, ripe Jersey cows milk cheese -
with fresh home-made brown bread, home-made chutney and local Winston apple
Caramelized Winston apple pancakes with Cox apple juice ice cream
Coffee and hand-made Somerset Cider Brandy chocolate truffles
Function – Finger food for 50 people (My Event) 28 Dec ‘05
Crostini with – Braised beetroot and feta cheese
Roast squash, rocket, Austrian pumpkin seed oil and local Shepherd’s Crook cheese
Local hot-smoked trout, celery and horseradish crème fraiche
Mini jacket potatoes with – Local cold smoked trout and cream cheese
Tapenade and buffalo mozzarella
King prawns and Mary Rose sauce
Selection of local cheeses (Stour blue, Old Burford and Hurdlebrook Cary) with freshly made rosemary and
raisin bread, onion and thyme bread and home-made chutney
Local Free-range chicken satay with peanut sauce
Steamed Tamworth pork loin rolls with plum sauce, organic shoyu and Cobram Estate Australian olive oil
Toasted almonds with chilli and Maldon sea salt
Leek, Stilton, Old Burford and walnut tarts
Local Chestnut mushroom and tarragon tarts
Chocolate and chestnut cake with sable biscuits and chocolate dentelles
Home made Turkish delight
Mini pomegranate Pavlovas
Wedding Reception, North Wooton, Somerset (Julian Langdon’s Event) 29 April ‘06
Smoked salmon twirl on organic pumpernickel
Smoked duck and plum chutney on crouton
Free-range chicken and mango Skewers
Handmade spiced pork and raisin sausage rolls
Roast rib of North Devon beef
Roast boned, stuffed and rolled Free-range chicken
Rolled loin and belly of Gloucester Old Spot with sausage meat stuffing
Roasted vegetable and goats cheese filo parcels
Served with –
Vegetables roasted in olive oil with thyme and cracked black pepper – sweet potato, red and yellow
peppers, courgette, celeriac and red onion
Fine bean, shallot and tomato salad
Endive and orange salad
Mixed leaf salad
Pavlovas with mango, kiwi, strawberry and passion fruit