Devon is renowned for its exceptional culinary gems. People travel from all over the country, and further afield, to taste some of the county's outstanding offerings. There's a new force to be reckoned with on the national food map, Devon's Deer Park Country House Hotel has just announced that Hadleigh Barrett has come on board as the new head chef.  Hadleigh, a classically trained chef in French cuisine, has a vast wealth of experience having previously worked at the luxury five-star hotel, Pennyhill Park and L'Ortolan, a gourmet restaurant run by John Burton Race.  Returning to his roots in Devon, Hadleigh was head chef at the Combe House Hotel for 14 years before joining the Deer Park Country House Hotel.

Mark Godfrey, managing director at the Deer Park Country House Hotel, says: “We're thrilled to welcome Hadleigh to the Deer Park. We have been creating something here that's truly outstanding and now we've just put the icing on the cake. Hadleigh is extremely highly regarded and, having now sampled lots of his cooking, it's easy to see why.”

Commenting on his new role at the Deer Park Country House Hotel, Hadleigh says: “The team here is full of passion and enthusiasm. I'm delighted to be working with them to get the Deer Park Country House Hotel on every must visit food destination list. There is a wealth of both produce available and inspiration from the setting to allow us to lead the way, creating the best food using the finest, fresh ingredients.” Hadleigh's signature dish is steamed courgette flower and crab mousse, roasted John Dory with a crab butter sauce.      

Hadleigh has stepped in to a chef's wonderland. The fabulous hotel, which oozes style, has every element someone could need to make the freshest, most delicious dishes. Beyond all the usual features one would expect to find in a leading hotel, there is much much more. 

Step outside and into the two-acre walled kitchen garden to find every vegetable, fruit and herb possible to grow on British soil. Once the main source of produce for the Squire's family back in the 13th Century, the Deer Park Country House Hotel is proud to be repeating history! The passionate gardening team is headed up by estate manager, Olly Forster, who excels in his knowledge of plants and how to get the most out of the space. Olly and Hadleigh work closely together to design the menus and maximise the production of seasonal ingredients to ensure the dishes served are at their absolute freshest, as well as being colourfully and creatively presented.  Commenting on this, Mark says: “Our vision at the hotel is to have something from the walled garden on every starter, main course and dessert, served in a beautiful way which will see our guests booking in again and again.”