The Man Behind The Chef: Simon Hulstone

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th January 2016

In association with

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In the build up to The Staff Canteen Live 2016 - Skillery supported by the Craft Guild of Chefs at Hotelympia 2016, we are taking a closer look at the chefs who will be joining us on stage. We dig a little deeper to find out what they are hiding under those chef whites - next up is Simon Hulstone. Simon Hulstone at Santa Maria Tellicherry Pepper cook off

Simon Hulstone is chef patron of The Elephant in Torquay, one of the best fine dining restaurants Devon has to offer.The Elephant has held three AA rosettes since 2005 and won its first Michelin star in 2006 which it retains to this day.

From a very young age Simon was winning numerous competitions across the world including Knorr National Chef of the Year, World Junior Chef, Craft Guild of Chefs Chef of the Year 2008, the captaincy of the English and British culinary teams and New Zealand Young Chef of the Year.

>>> Read more in the Behind The Chef series here

At The Staff Canteen we want to see what makes chefs tick. We asked Simon a few questions about what he gets up to when not in the kitchen:

Would you rather order a starter or a pudding?

"To be honest they are both my favourite, it's always a main course I struggle to order. I think that’s why I like to go with the tasting menu and then its out of my hands."

What would your last meal be?

"I think it would be pretty straightforward with a double pepperoni pizza and a sticky toffee pudding with cold ambrosia custard to finish. Simple pleasures."

What was the last thing you ate?

"A massive bowl of Frosties with full fat milk. It was lunch time."

If you weren’t a chef what would you be?

"I would like to think I would be in the army, I am very patriotic and I believe I would like to play my part in protecting my country and family."

If you could choose to dine in any restaurant in the world which would you choose?

"Tough one as I have made a major effort to dine in almost all the places I would like to go. I think it all depends on the company you are with, that's what actually makes the dining experience unique and fun, the food and location is irrelevant."

Who is you celebrity crush?

"I always wanted Rik Mayall to be a family member and I think I went through my teenage years believing he was. He is legendary and I owe 99% of my sarcasm to him."

If someone was to write your biography what would it be called?

"Look at that Ginger ****, what's he done now?"

What do you listen to in the kitchen?

"We don’t listen to music in the kitchen, they get to listen to my dulcet tones singing whatever I can think of that will stick in their heads all day, (Barbie girl , I’m blue , YMCA , I’m happy, etc.)"

What are you most proud of?

"Having a restaurant out of London that is recognised nationally and still open."

If you could own another chef’s restaurant whose would you choose?

"Midsummer House by Daniel Clifford, perfect location, beautiful town, close to London and far enough away to have a life. Amazing kitchen and beautiful dining room, not sure I could cope with the pikeys on the green though!"

Who would you trust to run your restaurant?

"I am still learning the word trust, when it's yours you want to be there at all times but I’m slowly letting go, so for now I would say Katy my wife."

Why did you choose to get involved in TSCLive?

"Because Mark Morris (The Staff Canteen Director) has nudes of me and said he will post them on twitter if I don’t do the demo!"

Visitors can go to and register now for a free ticket to the show.

>>> Read more from The Staff Canteen Live 2016 at Hotelympia here     


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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th January 2016

The Man Behind The Chef: Simon Hulstone