Adam Jackson has replaced Tom Heywood as The Rattle Owl's Head Chef

The Staff Canteen

Award-winning chef Adam Jackson has announced has joined The Rattle Owl after stepping down from the Bow Room at the Grays Court Hotel in York. 

Adam replaces chef Tom Heywood, with Tom announcing the opening of his new venture Pignut, which is expected to open in Helmsley next week on 14 June. 

In a post on his Instagram, Adam said: "I'm so pleased to be joining The Rattle Owl at such an interesting time with the launch of its new Tansy Beetle Bar as well as developing the beautiful upstairs rooms for my own tasting menu."

"I've long been a fan of Clarrie's commitment to sustainability right from inception and being able to work with some amazing local suppliers as well as having the freedom and creativity that comes from working in an independent restaurant is very exciting. Given the cost of living crisis it is critical for the sector to be able to offer our customers dining options at different price points," Adam added.

Adam is joined by General Manager Alex Stainsby, having worked closely together for a few years.

Speaking to The Staff Canteen about his departure earlier this year, Adam said: "My time at the Bow Room at Grays Court was a very successful one. We won three AA rosettes in my first year there, we retained it again this year, I think we were at a very high level of possibly four rosettes, which would have been my next step. We were listed in the Harden’s and Michelin guide and it was a successful time for us. I built a very good young team, which I presume will go on with whoever takes over the reins and push it forward with the direction we wanted to take it.”

Before joining the Bow Room at Grays Court, Adam worked at York’s Feversham Arms hotel as executive chef, where he added a number of dishes to the menu at the hotel's two-AA-rosette Weathervane restaurant.

Prior to joining the Feversham Arms, Adam was the head chef of the Michelin-starred Black Swan pub in Oldstead, where he helped it win its first star in 2012 and again in 2013. Adam also ran the 3 AA rosette Park Restaurant for 6 years before joining the Bow Room.

Discussing his priorities for the future, Adam told The Staff Canteen that he would like continue mentoring young people in the industry.

“We’ve been let down a lot in the last decade and my thing now is nurturing young staff and bringing them through the ranks. It’s what I want to do really,” he said.

Highlighting some of the issues preventing young people from considering a career in hospitality, Adam said: “I think the main issue really is the number of hours you have to work to the pay that you receive but I think that is improving. For maybe a decade or so, hospitality has been publicised as quite a hostile job and an unpleasant environment to work in.”

He added: “I think people like myself and other chefs who have mentored people are now showing that there is a different way, nurturing young chefs from the ground. My junior sous chef at the Bow Room was only 21 years old and he had been with me since he turned 17 and I think that’s best way, investing time in people, compared to how it’s been in the past.”

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 7th June 2023

Adam Jackson has replaced Tom Heywood as The Rattle Owl's Head Chef