BBC MasterChef Winner Jamie Scott – revisited
It’s been several months since favourite tables spoke to the then newly crowned BBC MasterChef 2014 winner Jamie Scott. That title will soon be passed to the winner of the new series currently being broadcast.
Our conversation back in the spring focused on his then position as Head Chef at a St. Andrews restaurant right by the world famous golf course:
2015 seems to have been a very busy year…
So Jamie what’s this we hear about “The Newport” –
I am so excited to be able to tell you guys about my own restaurant which is well under way with kitchen refits and design work coming together nicely. My wife Kelly will be alongside me as we build our vision and we use the word vision because “vision” is going to be a feature of the restaurant. Its laid out on two floors and both have large glass walls giving fantastic views across the River Tay to the Dundee coastline.
Both floors will also have large outside areas with glass walls surrounding. So the atmosphere in the warmer evenings and weekend will be very relaxed as people dine or enjoy drinks and watch the river flow by.
I’m currently spending a lot of time working on the menu..my menu, that sounds good. All the work should be finished just before Christmas and we can start putting the finishing touches to both the restaurant look and feel and the menu, so that we will be opening before the end of January.
As well as all the time and effort he is putting in at The Newport, Jamie also told us he is running a series of pop-up dining experiences, all sold out in minutes, in Montrose, Dundee and Edinburgh which are also part of the menu development process. When we asked about what the menu could look like, he preferred to wait and surprise people.
I will inevitably look back on my experience to date, like my time at “Rocca, where I was Head Chef. Overlooking the 18th green at St. Andrews golf course we often had golfers in the restaurant after they had finished a great round of golf. I’m sure they don’t try for a hole in one every game but if it happens, if it all comes together in that one special moment, well that’s how I felt. MasterChef was like getting a hole in one and my perfect round coming together.”
Are you a golfer? “I grew up near Glasgow and had the opportunity to play golf at many of the courses locally. Golf also featured in my early ventures into cooking. My family business was involved in providing catering to a few of the golf courses. This meant I was spending a lot of time in and around golf and golf courses.”
Are you any good?” I used to be… I had some trials for the county and could have possibly played for Scotland,” was the modest response.
When the family moved to Arbroath to take over the running of a pub, Jamie’s passion for the kitchen took hold, helping his mother everyday or evening whilst attending catering college. The reputation of the family pub quickly grew as he introduced his skills and styles of cooking on to the menu. A chance meeting with the owner of a local restaurant saw him joining The Byzantium restaurant shortly after leaving catering college.
In 2011, just six years after first helping in the family catering business, Jamie joined Rocca working under the then Head Chef Scott Davies, as junior Sous Chef. 2013 saw a lot of changes at Rocca and in Jamie’s culinary career. When the BBC came to the area looking for Chefs to take part in the upcoming MasterChef the Professionals, both Head Chef Scott and Jamie were asked to apply. Jamie’s application forms missed the entry deadline for 2013 by just one day!
Later that year a new Head Chef, David Aspin joined the kitchen at Rocca and Jamie became Senior Sous Chef. A year later and Jamie was offered the Head Chef position. Then in 2014, already a busy year for him, got a whole lot busier when the Masterchef team recontacted him to ask if he would like to be included in the 2014 series.
Jamie got his career “Hole in One” and was crowned 2014 Masterchef the Professionals winner.
His love of asian flavours and cooking styles came across during the Masterchef programmes, so when we asked him “where do you like to eat out” his first selection was no surprise.
My wife and I both love a little place in Glasgow called The Hanoi Bike Shop. Everything feels authentically Vietnamese and the food is perfectly presented and packed full of flavour. My favourite dish is a slow cooked pork belly in a red curry Vietnamese style.
If i’m allowed a second Favourite Tables suggestion then that would be Cail Bruich again in Glasgow. I love that they change the menus here according to the seasons. There is a market and à la carte menu, and they have two tasting menu of five or seven courses.
Favourite Tables predicts a very busy year ahead for Head Chef Jamie Scott and in particular around July when the Open Golf Championship rolls in to town. Will he get a chance to play a round of golf that fortnight who knows.
|Address:||Newport on Tay,
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