Chef's Profile

Head Chef Victoria Vasallo tells us a bit about her background..

I came to England from Malta 9 years ago, after owning my own restaurant for 10 years.

I worked in an open kitchen there so that the clients could see me and what we in the kitchen were doing.

I have brought my enthusiasm for client contact with me as whenever I am cooking I will come out of the kitchen and mingle with the clients- if they want a specific dish that isn't on the menu, I am happy to do this for them and I am a strong believer in knowing who I am cooking for!

Tell us a little more about your time in Malta

I was well known in the industry in Malta and was commissioned to be the Head Chef for the HSBC Head Office.

How would you describe your cooking style?

I would say it is modern European style- light food, great ingredients and a great emphasis on fabulous flavours.

Do you have a signature dish?

Indeed I do- shoulder of lamb with spices- the secret is in the spicing and it is a delicious dish and very popular with my customers.

Who are your inspirations?

My inspirations are Raymond Blanc- I have worked with him and he is not only a fantastic Chef, but also a lovely man- and Rick Stein.

What is your favourite food?

I love fish especially Halibut- a fantastic fish with a great flavour but delicate too.

Where do you source your produce?

Wherever possible we use local producers, we are very lucky in Yorkshire as we have some fantastic farm shops and producers.

Is there a social aspect to working at the Dower House?

Yes there is, but to be honest at the moment I am building my team and I tend to spend most of my time ensuring my team is the very best they can be.

What can we expect from the Dower House kitchen this Summer?

Great food, great flavours and some great times ahead!