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Meet The Chef

Evening Express - EE 7-Day TV Mag

4 July 2015

By Erica Banks

Like many children, Paul Avis has his mother to thank for inspiring him in his choice of career.

But it was not because she spent hours teaching him secret family recipes or showing him how to perfectly blend ingredients.
Rather, it was her less-than-stellar skills in the kitchen that forced him to pick up a saucepan to see if he could do a better job himself. As it turns out, he was so good that within a few years he was working under one of the country's top chefs.

Now head chef at the White Horse Inn at Balmedie, Paul still loves experimenting with new flavours. He said: "I think most kids at that age would have settled for making themselves beans on toast, but I really liked to dabble and tried to make different things for me and my sisters.

"I used to spend quite a lot of time watching my gran working in the kitchen, and learned how to make pies and pastry. She grew up during the war when ingredients were in short supply, so she knew how to make something from nothing. It was really inspiring to watch."

With experience at The Edwardian Hotel in London, a country manor in Wales and at a luxury golf resort in Bermuda, Paul landed a job in a venue run by celebrity chef Michael Caines.

"I rediscovered my passion for experimenting with food, just as I had done in the kitchen as a youngster," he said.

The White Horse Inn will be one of his greatest challenges yet, as he joins the hotel as it is undergoing a huge refurbishment. The new menu features excellent local produce and high quality traditional food.

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