Award-winning chef Iain Sampson heads up the kitchen at Dere Street Restaurant and Bar. Sampson, who started his career at the Ritz Hotel in London, was crowned the best chef in Wales in 2010 at the Welsh International Culinary Championships at Coleg Llandrillo Cymru, Rhos on Sea.
A native of Kent, England, Sampson honed his highly praised, modern European culinary skills in top London hotels and as head chef at luxury hotel restaurants including Peterstone Court Country House, The Newbridge, near Usk in Monmouthshire (2005 Welsh restaurant of the year, under Sampson’s leadership) and The Bear Hotel Crickhowell, on the eastern edge of the Brecon Beacons.
Sampson brings his acclaimed interpretation of British gastro and Italian bistro food to Dere Street Restaurant and Bar which can range from a full English breakfast to a traditional Ploughman’s lunch platter to a three-course a la carte dinner featuring the finest local meats, fish, pasta, vegetables and homemade desserts served in Connecticut. He bakes his own breads, cans his own chutneys and hand-picks the cheeses on the Dere Street menu.
Sampson is known for his contemporary take on classic British and Italian fare, in which traditional favorites like slow braised lamb, pork or veal osso bucco, panna cotta and Bakewell tart are prepared and served in an innovative bistro style. “Sometimes simple is best,” said Sampson. “We let the quality of the food do the talking.”
As the head chef at Dere Street Restaurant and Bar, Sampson will serve a seasonal, locally-sourced (where possible) menu for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and traditional British Sunday roast. “We want Dere Street to be a comfortable place where you can drop in for a glass of wine, beer or a perfectly made gin based cocktail, and enjoy our food any time of the day,” said Sampson.