A tapas restaurant and cocktail bar has announced the appointment of a new head chef as part of its ambitious growth plans for 2015.
Bar 44, which has restaurants in Cowbridge and Penarth, has promoted Tom Maynard, 27, from Cwmbran, to head chef of its Penarth restaurant.
Mr Maynard will now be working alongside co-founders Owen and Tom Morgan to develop new menus that showcase quality, seasonal ingredients using traditional tapas techniques. He will also be responsible for the training and development of staff at Penarth.
Mr Maynard has a wealth of experience having worked with a diverse range of food cuisines. He began his career working alongside Michelin starred chef Stephen Terry at the Hardwick near Abergavenny before deciding to move to London to develop his experience.
In London, Mr Maynard joined seafood restaurant Scott’s of Mayfair, London, part of the wider Caprice Holdings. He then worked at several other Caprice Holdings restaurants including The Ivy Private Members’ Club and J Sheeky where he worked at the Oyster Bar, and first experienced the concept of tapas.
After several years working in London, Mr Maynard decided to move back to Wales with his family where he secured a job at Bar 44 as senior sous chef at Penarth.
Tom Maynard said: “I’m thrilled to have been promoted to head chef at Bar 44, Penarth. I’ve worked in a number of high profile restaurants but as soon as I joined Bar 44, I saw it was a forward thinking company which cooks quality food using the best, seasonal ingredients and I knew I shared the same values. I have huge ambitions for Penarth and I would like to see Bar 44 Penarth gain the recognition from the industry and our customers alike for our fresh innovative food.
“The training and development of staff is also very important to Bar 44 and I’m keen to help staff develop to their full potential. I’m looking forward to playing such an instrumental role in the exciting future at Bar 44.”
Owen Morgan, co-founder of Bar 44, said: “Tom has been a huge asset to Bar 44 since he joined in 2012. He has a vast amount of experience and shares the same values as us so we know he will do a great job as head chef at Penarth. We have huge growth plans for Bar 44 this year so having trusted and knowledgeable staff is vital to us to ensure we maintain serving quality food on a daily basis.
“We always try to promote our staff from within, which is why training and development is key to us as employers. Tom has great ideas and vision for ensuring people understand the cuisine of tapas and we’re excited to help him showcase these ideas.”
Bar 44 in Cowbridge was established in 2002 due to the Morgan brothers’ (Tom and Owen) love for fresh Spanish food, having holidayed there as a family. The success of the Cowbridge restaurant led the brothers to open their second restaurant in Penarth in 2012. Bar 44 also recently announced it will be opening its third restaurant in Cardiff city centre later this year.
The restaurants have also received UK-wide recognition from the Observer Food Monthly Awards 2013 and Bar 44 in Cowbridge has recently been awarded Waitrose Good Food Guide’s Restaurant of the Year for Wales. It follows being included in The Sunday Times Food List Cheap Eats Guide, which profiles 130 restaurants in the UK that provide value for money food.