A chef from Rochdale has become the youngest person ever to win a Michelin star in Scotland.
Sam Yorke, aged 25, was awarded a highly coveted Michelin star alongside fellow head chef Tomás Gormley, 28, for their Edinburgh restaurant Heron this week.
Originally hailing from Rochdale, Sam trained at the Edinburgh New Town Cooking School before working at the much applauded (now closed) Castle Terrace, where he graduated from commis to sous chef in less than two years under the guidance of chef Dominic Jack.
Sam was also recently named in Code’s 30 under 30 class for 2023/24 as one of the most exciting young chefs in the UK.
Since opening in 2021, Heron offers farm-to-table fine dining with an a-la-carte menu and two tasting menus that change every few weeks.
The duo’s restaurant showcases the best of Scotland’s seasonal produce: including organic fruit and vegetables from The Free Company, wild fish and seafood from Belhaven Lobsters, and game and heritage breed meat from MacDuff Butchers from the Lothians and Scottish Borders.
The pair first joined forces as head chefs with a pop-up at-home fine dining experience, Bad Seeds, during Covid which was a sell-out each week.
Yorke and Gormley met when they were both working at Seasons (now closed), which was included in the Michelin Guide.
Tomás also has an impressive background, working across some of the country’s best loved restaurants including (the now closed) Le Roi Fou, two-star Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles and 21212, when it held its Michelin star.
Tomás and Sam offer an a la carte and tasting menu championing the best of each season, with dishes on their most recent tasting menu including hand-dived Orkney scallops marinated in garum and topped with blood orange and radish; Hopetoun Estate venison, beetroot, grape and rhubarb, almond and tarragon.
Speaking on their win, Rochdale lad Sam commented: “To say that I’m delighted would be an understatement. It means a great deal to be recognised by such a prestigious organisation for our work at Heron.
“It’s a real testament to the unwavering focus and dedication of the entire team, without whom we wouldn’t be where we are today.”
Tomás added: “If you had asked me two years ago, when Sam and I sat down to start planning our pop-up Bad Seeds, I would never have imagined this happening.
“This is a huge achievement for everyone, and I am so grateful that we get to go on this journey with them.”
This now means that Leith has the highest concentration of Michelin-star restaurants per square metre outside of London, making it a foodie capital for the UK.
Manchester, meanwhile, was snubbed at this year’s Michelin awards with no new stars awarded to its restaurants. Simon Martin’s Mana retained its one-star rating, whilst Where The Light Gets In – which received a Green Star last year – was overlooked for further awards in 2023.
The Lawn Club closes temporarily after bar brawl at event leaves ‘trail of blood’ on floor
The Lawn Club has been temporarily instructed to close after a fight last weekend left a trail of blood on the floor outside.
The popular Spinningfields sun-trap bar has said that it’s cooperating fully with Greater Manchester Police and Manchester City Council while the incident is investigated.
A report from GMP said that ‘a large group of people’ were fighting at the city centre bar, one of whom reportedly was seen with a gun, which was thankfully not fired.
At 10.25pm on Sunday 4 June, North West Ambulance service reported that a male had been stabbed in the leg but ‘the knife was no longer in his leg and they didn’t know where it was’.
The victim got up and walked away, and has still not been traced.
The incident happened during an event that was organised by a third party promoter.
The Lawn Club provided CCTV footage to officers, which showed two males arguing before a third appeared with a black handgun.
A spokesperson for the venue said: “On Sunday 4th June, an incident occurred at The Lawn Club, the premises operated by Hardman Bars. This was during an event organised by a third party promoter.
“As a result of this incident, we have been instructed to close the premises temporarily. We also recognise and fully comply with the request by GMP and Manchester City Council, received at a hearing on 07.06.23, for a temporary suspension of our licence while the incident is investigated and reviewed in full.
“We are cooperating entirely with GMP and Manchester City Council to provide any information they require in relation to the incident.
“We’d like to reassure our customers and the community that this is an isolated incident. But nevertheless, the safety of our team, customers and the community is of the highest importance to us. As such, during this period of closure, we will be actively working with the authorities and relevant parties to review all policies and procedures in place at the premises.”
Featured image: The Manc Group
The Stockport farm supper club where you eat outside in the fields
There’s a supper club on a community farm in Stockport where you can dine outside in the very fields where your food has grown.
Hosted by Manchester food waste cafe Open Kitchen in partnership with The Kindling Trust, the journey from plot to plate has never been shorter.
The pair have joined forces to celebrate local, seasonal and sustainably produced food in the most delicious way possible – with a three-course vegan menu designed to show off the organic produce grown at The Kindling Trust’s site in Woodbank Memorial Park.
The supper will be served outside in the fields as part of a unique ‘pop-up restaurant’ experience, accompanied by paired organic wines designed to complement each dish.
Full bar service will also be provided, with provisions made for cover from the ‘Manchester weather’ if required.
Corin Bell, Exec Director of Open Kitchen said, “Messages about sustainability can sometimes feel like they are all about going without…. Don’t fly, don’t drive, etc.
“We want to focus on positive messages about sustainability, that focus on shifts in behaviour that are kinder to planet and people.
“The event with Kindling will showcase beautiful food and drink, and also be supporting local, sustainable, independent and ethical business, all of which are really core values for both open Kitchen and Kindling”.
Chris Walsh from the Kindling Trust said: “Events like fine dining in the fields are really important to us, because they open up the farm to members of the public, and help to really bring the message home about why local and sustainable produce is so important for our planet and our local economy”.
Located just a mile east of Stockport town centre, Woodbank Community Food Hub is an urban horticulture hub co-ordinated by the Kindling Trust that joins up inclusive community gardening with commercial organic food production.
The size of one and a half football pitches, it includes several large polytunnels for under-cover veg growing as well as three field blocks, apple trees and a community garden.
As well as hosting the dinner in the fields, it is also a place to collect fresh organic veg bags delivered by the Veg Box People, who make sure farmers get regular demand and a fair price for their produce.
Taking place from 6 to 9pm on Wednesday 21 June 2023, to find out more about the dinner and purchase tickets click here.