Daniel Smith, The Ingham Swan

The Staff Canteen

Daniel Smith discusses his role as Chef Patron at The Ingham Swan and his own inspirations with regards to pursuing a career as a Chef.

Name: Daniel Smith

Place of work: The Ingham Swan 

Role: Chef Patron

Bio: With a career spanning 20 years, Norfolk-born Daniel has worked for the acclaimed Michel Roux Jr at the two Michelin-starred London restaurant, Le Gavroche before moving back to Norfolk to work with another renowned Chef - Galton Blackiston at Morston Hall where he achieved his first Michelin Star as Head Chef, aged 23. He then spent a decade at the popular Wildebeest Arms in South Norfolk before opening The Ingham Swan, his first restaurant, in April 2010. During this time he has built up a solid reputation and loyal following as being one of Norfolk's most innovative and creative Chefs.

Follow Adam on Twitter: @Chefdannysmith

Chef Skills

Daniel Smith takes us through her personal experiences whilst being in the Culinary Industry. These key skills that young Chefs and industry professionals learn as part of their basic training.

What first made you go into the food sector?

The inspiration for me to become a Chef was through my mum, she has been in the catering sector making celebration cakes for over 30 years. I grew up in Great Yarmouth which is a tourist area so my passion came from growing up there and was further enhanced by my parent's love of food and wine.

What do you like most about working as a Chef?

I love working with passionate people that want to serve great food and I get a real sense of joy of making something interesting that stimulates people's senses.

Do you think there is too much emphasis for Chefs to go straight into a restaurant?

I think it's paramount that Chefs get into great kitchens and to get in great processes so it's inevitable they need to make there a way to a restaurant as soon as possible.

Do you believe that students are encouraged enough to consider a career in catering?

There is a major shortage of Chefs joining the sector. With culture changing the emphasis on improving hours and conditions it's become harder to encourage students to join high-end restaurants that command long hours with split shifts.

What would you advise for someone looking to follow in your footsteps?

Ask as many questions as you can to gain as much experience and knowledge from who you meet and cook with. When you get put down and things go wrong you need to understand that it's not personal and not to make the same mistake twice (that person was there once as well!).

If you could go back and do anything differently would you?

Listen and work harder at school!

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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 25th August 2016

Daniel Smith, The Ingham Swan