2 Michelin Star Chefs: Daniel Clifford, Midsummer House

The Staff Canteen

Daniel Clifford is the chef patron of two Michelin-starred Midsummer House in Cambridge

Born in Canterbury in 1973, the chef took over the Cambridge restaurant in 1998 and earned the restaurant’s first Michelin star in 2002. A second followed in 2005, which it has retained ever since.

Midsummer House

Midsummer Common, Cambridge CB4 1HA

Website: www.midsummerhouse.co.uk
Twitter: @MidsummerHouse
Facebook: Midsummer House Restaurant

Telephone:  01223369299
Email: [email protected]

Opening Times:

Lunch: Wednesday – Saturday 12pm – 1:30pm
Dinner: Tuesday – Thursday 7:00pm – 8:30pm
Dinner: Friday and Saturday 6:30pm – 9:30pm

Closed Sundays, Mondays and Tuesday lunch.

Daniel Clifford Instagram: @midsummerchef
Daniel Clifford Twitter: @Midsummerchef

Daniel’s Successes

Daniel Clifford became a household name after appearing on the BBC's Great British Menu, where he won best main dish in 2012 and best dessert in 2013, and impressed onlookers with an inventive approach and down-to-earth attitude.

The chef was been known amongst his peers for many years prior thanks to a fresh approach to food preparation and ingredients and an openness to saying things as they are. 

He began as a commis chef at the Howfield Manor Hotel in his hometown of Canterbury. He has worked for some of the biggest names in the industry including Simon Gueller at Rascasse and Marco Pierre White at The Box Tree; Daniel also takes inspiration from a spell with Jean Bardet, long considered one of France's most talented chefs.

Midsummer House

Daniel took over what was a struggling restaurant at the time, and turned it into one of the most prestigious establishments in East Anglia. For this, the chef credits his wife and family, without whom he says he wouldn't have had the strength or desire to achieve what he has. 

It is clear there have been tough moments since Daniel began turning Midsummer House into the success we see today, not least the two occasions which saw the riverside restaurant forced to close due to floods.

Daniel also talked of his commitment to making Midsummer House a relaxing and easy-going restaurant to visit, in contrast to the 'special occasion', formal and almost fearsome reputation so many Michelin star restaurants' maintain, an effort which he and his head chef, Mark Abbottdoubled down on during the closure which ensued as a result of Covid-19.

Since then, the restaurant has emptied its wine cellar and offers just a parred-down drinks list, the menu is tasting only with no vegetarian or vegan options. Both chefs said that although simpler than before, the new offering is vastly superior, and they believe it will permanently improve the overall experience at the restaurant.

What the guides say...


AA Restaurant Guide


Good Food Guide

Ranked 22nd best restaurant in the UK

8/10 score, meaning "Highly individual with impressive artistry," and "little room for disappointment"


Cooking style

Daniel’s menu and style of food focuses on the most seasonal produce and his dishes are developed to make they taste as natural as possible.

Top chefs who have passed through Midsummer kitchen

Midsummer House prides itself on staff development with some brilliant chefs passing through the kitchen during the years and progressing to gain their own Michelin stars including Mark Poynton, Tim Allen, Lawrence Yates and Matt Gillan

Awards and tv appearances:

AA Guide 5 Rosettes

BBC Great British Menu winner 2012, 2013

Chefs’ Chef of the Year at the 2015/16 AA awards

Midsummer House head chef Mark Abbott won the Great British Menu starter in 2016

Snackmasters 2020 







Videos by Daniel Clifford:

In these challenging times…

The Staff Canteen team are taking a different approach to keeping our website independent and delivering content free from commercial influence. Our Editorial team have a critical role to play in informing and supporting our audience in a balanced way. We would never put up a paywall and restrict access – The Staff Canteen is open to all and we want to keep bringing you the content you want; more from younger chefs, more on mental health, more tips and industry knowledge, more recipes and more videos. We need your support right now, more than ever, to keep The Staff Canteen active. Without your financial contributions this would not be possible.

Over the last 12 years, The Staff Canteen has built what has become the go-to platform for chefs and hospitality professionals. As members and visitors, your daily support has made The Staff Canteen what it is today. Our features and videos from the world’s biggest name chefs are something we are proud of. We have over 500,000 followers across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and other social channels, each connecting with chefs across the world. Our editorial and social media team are creating and delivering engaging content every day, to support you and the whole sector - we want to do more for you.

A single coffee is more than £2, a beer is £4.50 and a large glass of wine can be £6 or more.

Support The Staff Canteen from as little as £1 today. Thank you.

The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th January 2021

2 Michelin Star Chefs: Daniel Clifford, Midsummer House