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Tom Kemble joins Chalk Restaurant and Wiston Estate Winery as Executive Chef

Tom Kemble: Image Credit: Yuki Sugiura

Wiston Estate is pleased to announce that critically acclaimed chef Tom Kemble has joined the team at Chalk Restaurant and Wiston Estate as Executive Chef, bringing more than fifteen years of experience at some of the world’s most prestigious restaurants to the West Sussex restaurant and across the estate.

Formerly head chef at Bonhams Restaurant – where he led the restaurant to earn a Michelin star within seven months of opening – Tom brings his precise cooking style, ingredient-led approach and dedication to celebrating local produce to Chalk. Sussex-based Tom’s wider career encompasses roles at World’s 50 Best Restaurants-honoured Hedone, Tom Kemble at The Pass and globally renowned Swedish restaurant Fäviken. Tom will be working alongside Chalk Head Chef Bradley Adams, who has been a part of the kitchen team since 2021.

Located on the Wiston Estate’s North Farm winery site, 122-cover restaurant Chalk opened in December 2021 and draws its name from the soft white limestone that the vineyard sits on, which gives its award-winning wines their distinctive, terroir-driven profile.

Chalk is a continuation of the work that the Goring family – Wiston Estate’s owners – have done to champion a sustainable approach to farming and food on the estate. Pip Goring, who grew up in South Africa and led the way with introducing wine production to Wiston, wanted to embrace Sussex’s local bounty, having been shocked at how English farms sent their produce so far away to be sold when she arrived in the country in the 1970s. As such, Chalk offers a regularly changing menu that highlights the best seasonal and hyperlocal produce, with the majority of ingredients sourced from Wiston Estate and nearby farms.

Chalk Goring Family Image Credit: Matthew Thomas

Considered yet approachable, the Chalk menu celebrates the nature, heritage, and community of the estate, using ingredients from the estate’s allotment-styled walled garden and neighbouring artisan suppliers. Meats such as venison, Herdwick lamb, pheasant and White Park beef are all sourced from the estate, while the likes of Heritage pumpkin, beetroots, Dazzling Blue kale and Hinnonmaki gooseberry are grown in the walled garden. There is a synergy between the vineyard, wider estate and the kitchen at Chalk, with old wine barrels used for smoking salt that appears on the restaurant menu, and spent grape skins from the wine production process, and food waste from the kitchen being used as compost on the land. Highlights from the current a al carte menu, available for lunch and dinner, include dishes such as ‘La Latteria’ Burrata with Estate Pumpkin, Sage Pesto & Radicchio; Venison Carpaccio, Walnuts, Twineham Grange & Mixed Leaves; Herdwick Rack of Lamb & Belly, Wild Garlic, Hay-Smoked Pomme Puree, and Jerusalem Artichoke Soup, Hazelnut Praline & Olde Sussex Rarebit, all containing ingredients sourced directly from the estate.

The Chalk wine list consists of many wines produced on the estate, and plenty from further afield. Other list highlights include Restless River Ave Maria Chardonnay, from Hemel-en-Aarde, South Africa; Bengula Cove ‘Lighthouse’ Syrah, from Walker Bay, South Africa, along with wines from its Sussex sister estates Leonardslee and Mannings Heath, which are processed at Wiston Estate winery.

Occupying a renovated 18th century threshing barn, Chalk has been thoughtfully restored to create a warm and welcoming space. In the summer, a beautiful alfresco courtyard hosts 60 covers, while a private dining room hosts 10 all year round. The interiors have been designed by Pip’s daughter-in-law Kirsty Goring, including furniture that has been handcrafted by artisanal workshops on the estate, with crockery sourced from Surrey Ceramics. Paintings from local artists adorn the walls, along with chalk sculptures handmade by Kirsty herself, while Sussex-based printmaker Julia White has illustrated Chalk’s menus with drawings of local wildlife.

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