Wednesday, 29 July 2020 00:00

Maids Head Hotel Head Chef Semi-Finalist in National Chef of the Year for Third Year Running

Written by  Paul Dickson
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Maids Head Hotel Head Chef Semi-Finalist in National Chef of the Year for Third Year Running

Marcin ‘Magic’ Pomierny (age 35), Head Chef at the Maids Head Hotel in Tombland Norwich and Chef of the Year in the EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards 2016, is a semi-finalist in the 2020 Craft Guild of Chefs National Chef of the Year competition for the third year running.

Forty chefs are competing in the semi-finals for a place in the final 10. This year, because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the live semi-final cook offs will not take place. Instead Magic has been tasked with submitting a short video presenting a signature dish which sums up his personality and tells his story 'in a couple of bites'.

Magic, who was a finalist in the 2008 Craft Guild of Chefs Young Chef of the Year competition explains: “My video features an amuse bouche, 'Summer of the Sourdough Crisp', inspired by the summers when I was growing up in Poland. My family went to work on my Grandparents' farm. The work was hard, but my Grandmother produced fabulous meals and I particularly remember the wonderful tomatoes that she grew and we picked from the garden and the sourdough bread that she baked every day. My Sourdough Crisp features avocado and elderflower tatare, Heritage Norfolk tomatoes ,soft white cheese and smoked onion powder.”

I am very excited to have reached the semi-final of the National Chef of the Year competition for the third year running. I have learned a lot in my two semi-final appearances and will do my very best to secure a place in the final for the Maids Head and Norwich. It is very good to be back in the kitchen following lockdown. I hope that many guests will take the opportunity of the Eat Out to Help Out discount to sample my summer a la carte menu.”

To reach the semi-final, Magic had to submit a menu featuring tapas style starters with Gilt head bream as the key ingredient, a lamb main course, with sourcing and provenance being important and showstopping dessert focusing on strawberries and cream. Magic's Norfolk Lamb Saddle was sourced from Green Farm Lamb, Little Barningham. His dessert was texture of Norfolk strawberry with elderflower parfait, pistachio and English sparkling wine. As part of the semi-final process, Magic also has to answer a series of questions on his menu choices and the impact of Covid-19 on his kitchen.

The 10 finalists will be announced on 17 August and the final cook off will take place at Le Cordon Bleu in London on 7 September, with the winner being announced on 30 September.

Christine Malcolm, General Manager, Maids Head Hotel said: “Magic has worked very hard over the last eight years to raise the profile of the hotel as a fine dining destination. We achieved a second AA Rosette in 2016 and Magic’s ambition is to raise the bar further and achieve a third AA Rosette. We wish Magic all the best for the National Chef of the Year competition.”

The Maids Head is taking part in the Eat Out to Help Out scheme. Enjoy Magic's summer seasonal a la carte menu and get £10 discount per person from August 3 to 31.

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Marcin ‘Magic’ Pomierny comes from near Krakow in Poland. He trained as a chef in Poland and studied catering for diabetics as an additional subject. Magic moved to Norwich in June 2005; his brother and sister were already in the city.

He spoke little English at the time and his family helped secure him a job as a kitchen porter at Tatlers, where he did washing up and food preparation for one year. Then Magic worked for Pulse and The Library for 18 months, followed by McIntoshes Kitchen for another 18 months.

His next job in 2009 was Sous Chef at Rare Steak House and he moved on to The Mad Moose where he was Sous Chef for two years and Head Chef for one year. Magic arrived at the Maids Head Hotel as Sous Chef in May 2013 and was promoted to Head Chef in September 2013.

For more information about the Maids Head Hotel see www.maidsheadhotel.co.uk. To reserve a table for lunch or dinner in the WinePress Restaurant, the Maids Head Hotel, Norwich, t. 01603 272010.

For more information about the National Chef of the Year competition see www.nationalchefoftheyear.co.uk

Read 228 times Last modified on Wednesday, 29 July 2020 17:43

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  • Maids Head Hotel Head Chef is National Chef of the Year Finalist

    Marcin ‘Magic’ Pomierny (age 35), Head Chef at the Maids Head Hotel in Tombland, Norwich and Chef of the Year in the EDP Norfolk Food and Drink Awards 2016, is a finalist in the 2020 Craft Guild of Chefs National Chef of the Year competition. Magic reached the semi-final of the competition in 2018 and 2019.

    Ten chefs are competing in the final cook off at Le Cordon Bleu cookery school in London on Monday, September 7. The winner will be revealed on Wednesday, September 30 during Hospitality Week.

    Magic will be cooking the menu, which followed a brief from the judges, that he submitted to reach the semi-final. The menu features tapas style starters with Gilt head bream as the key ingredient, a locally sourced lamb main course, and strawberries and cream for dessert. Magic's Norfolk Lamb Saddle is sourced from Green Farm Lamb, Little Barningham. His dessert is texture of Norfolk strawberry with elderflower parfait, pistachio and English sparkling wine.

  • Historic Maids Head Hotel, Norwich to re-open from lockdown on Saturday, July 4

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    Christine Malcolm, General Manager said: “We are all looking forward to welcoming guests to the hotel after this three month closure. It will also be very good to see our staff return from furlough. They have been keeping their spirits up with a whole range of activities from a baking competition, to a Zoom lunch and a virtual run between the Maids Head and our sister hotels, The Gonville in Cambridge and The Ship at Brancaster.

    We recently delivered a lockdown gift of Norfolk strawberries, clotted cream and chilled rose wine to our 90 staff who live across the county, from Norwich to Wymondham, Reepham and Gorleston. This resulted in some great feedback, Dawn said: 'Lovely surpirise today, thank you Christine and the team, miss you all...' ”

  • Cheque Presentation to Break – Maids Head Hotel Charity 2019

    Throughout 2019, Break was the Maids Head Hotel's local charity. During the year staff and guests raised £1,184.06. We invited Danielle Gravestock from Break to receive the cheque and celebrate the fundraising success with our staff.

    The money was raised through collection buckets, a Christmas raffle and donations at special events including resident tour guide Paul Dickson's Shardlake's Norwich tours during English Tourism Week and Norfolk Day and Rob Knee from the Paston Heritage Society who gave talks about the Pastons and the Paston Letters on Norfolk Day and on 22 November. The second talk was on the anniversary of the Maids Head getting it's first official written mention in a Paston letter. A team from the Maids Head – Jonathan Brasnett, Andrew Shorthose and Rose Taylor - also completed the City of Norwich half marathon in aid of Break.

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    Following last autumn's refurbishment of the Maids Head Hotel's Wine Press Restaurant, Head Chef Marcin 'Magic' Pomierny, semi-finalist in the National Chef of the Year competition 2018 and 2019, has created a new A La Carte Menu to complement the contemporary look of the AA Two Rosette restaurant, featuring the finest of local seasonal produce.

    The three-course menu, which will change with the seasons, also features an amuse bouche and a pre-dessert as part of the offer. Diners can opt for three or two course meals. 

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    The boat will be driven by a Maids Head skipper, assisted by a steward, and can take 12 passengers. The Murtle Fish will be available to hire from the spring for afternoon tea afloat, wedding photography and receptions, business away days, drinks receptions and guided river tours.

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