Let me introduce to you Johnny Stanford. The chef who is heading up the new highly anticipated No.1 Broad Street in Cuckfield, West Sussex. We caught up with up with him for the third in our Ten Minute Series to find out a little bit more on this exciting new venture for him.
Can you introduce No.1 Broad Street to us?
No.1 Broad Street is a relaxed fine dining restaurant in the beautiful village of Cuckfield, West Sussex. We want guests to enjoy good food, great wine and seamless service without the uptight formalities that are associated with “fine dining”. We want to firmly place our own stamp on this restaurant. We have all been in hospitality for a good few years now and have combined ideas of what we want a restaurant to be. We’re a tight-knit team of dedicated professionals. Our team consists of Joel- our restaurant manager, Jose- our sous chef and Sean our assistant manager and myself as head chef.
What can we expect from the menu at no.1 broad street?
With the menu, I’d like it to be fresh, clean and seasonal. I want to change it as frequently as I can to keep things interesting- using the best of British ingredients. You can expect classic and contemporary flavour combinations alongside modern techniques. I like using humble ingredients- fine dining and good food for me isn’t just expensive ingredients. It’s how you treat ingredients, produce and make it special.
It must be every chefs’ dream to have the opportunity of heading up the kitchen of a brand-new restaurant, without any preconceptions- how does that feel?
It’s amazing, exciting and daunting all at the same time. It’s my second brand new opening as a head chef now. I learnt a lot about what to do and what not to do while opening ‘Pascere’ in Brighton. Because of this I feel more confident with everything this time around at Number one. We’ve been given so much freedom to cook and use whatever and whoever we like as suppliers. Philip has been supportive of Joel and my self’s ideas. It’s scary putting it out there as we know what we want to offer and how we want to do it so guests can come, eat, drink and enjoy themselves. We just hope everyone does!!
What made you want to become a chef?
My Grandma Barbara, I used to help her cook from an early age and she is an amazing cook. We used to cook all sorts from soups to cakes. That’s what started me off. After that, I knew I always wanted to cook but had no concept of what a chef was or did. I went to catering college when I left school with the intention of becoming a pastry chef. Once I did my first service in a kitchen on a stove I was hooked.
Can you tell us what inspires your dishes and style of cooking?
Ingredients and seasons are my biggest inspiration. You only get certain ingredients at a certain time of year so when that time rolls around, I want to showcase those ingredients at their very best. Asparagus is a good example as it is only available for 5-6 weeks a year in the UK. So, we want to use it in 3 different dishes over that period to show how great British asparagus can be. As for my style of cooking- I like to try and use British ingredients. We grow, farm, produce, catch and make some amazing things in the UK. I want to showcase that, and the longer we are open, the more of these amazing producers we can find. I really love visiting these suppliers- my girlfriend Sophie and daughter Bluebell come to. It’s inspiring meeting these people and sharing their stories with the guests that we serve.
For more information or to visit you can visit the restaurant’s website here .