The team behind three of Tees Valley’s most popular establishments; The Bay Horse in Hurworth and Muse and Cena in Yarm, is celebrating a collective 100 years’ experience in the industry by inspiring and developing the next generation of chefs.
The successful restaurateurs, Jonathan Hall and Marcus Bennett alongside partners, Adrian Rummel and Peter Huggins have launched ‘The Chef Factor’. A competition for aspiring chefs of all ages which will see the winning dish taking pride of place on the menu at Muse.
Marcus, whose 30-year career as a renowned chef includes cooking for Princess Diana in the Caribbean, being the Head Chef of the Cleveland Tontine and creating menus for GNER, is looking forward to finding the region’s hidden culinary talent, as this is something he’s proud to have nurtured within the business.
He said: “I feel a sense of pride in seeing talent for the food and drink industry develop, knowing I had some influence upon it.
“All of our head chefs have been promoted within the business and are now cultivating their own teams, which is great to see.”
Business partner, Jonathan, who co-managed Mitchels & Butlers pubs before running the Hide Bars Group, a senior partnership he was bought out of in 2006, puts the success of the eateries down to playing to the strengths of each partner.
“We have worked hand in hand from the beginning. Having individual strengths means although we are all involved in every element of the business, we have the confidence in each other to take on the challenges we know we can handle,” he said.
Marcus and Jonathan, who have been friends since leaving school almost 30 years ago, always had a desire to work together, which came true with the opening of The Bay Horse in 2008.
Adrian Rummel, previously General Manager at Hide Bar and The Bay Horse, joined Jonathan and Marcus as a partner of Muse, when the trio opened the Yarm High Street restaurant in 2012.
Two years later, with the opening of Cena, Peter Huggins, joined the team, becoming a partner in the modern, Italian restaurant.
Employing over 90 members of staff across the establishments, the four partners believe their collective experience and wealth of knowledge enables them to attract and develop a team boasting a wealth of skills.
Jonathan said: “Every one of our employees is an asset to our business and we’re proud to be able to develop them into any role they would like to pursue. For example, each head chef began their career with us and have now grown into running their own kitchens.”
The Chef Factor competition is open to aspiring chefs of all ages and involves a live cooking final on Wednesday August 16th.
To enter, simply create your signature dish, photograph it and post to social media – make sure you tag Muse though!
The winner will not only have the glory of seeing their dish featured on the menu at Muse during its fifth birthday month, they will also win a champagne dinner for our to see the dish enjoyed by diners in the restaurant. All proceeds from the sale of the winning dish during September will be donated to Parkinson’s UK.