Jamie Oliver chef director turns hand to first solo restaurant venture

A chef who has worked closely with Jamie Oliver for the past decade is to open his first solo restaurant.

Sam Elliott, 29, will open ‘Pasture’ in Bristol, the city where he grew up after cutting his teeth working for the TV chef.

For the past 10 years he has been working around the UK for Jamie Oliver, spending the past three years holding the top position of chef director.

Elliott told the Bristol Post that he always dreamed of opening his own restaurant by the age of 30 and he has bought the former Byzantium restaurant site in Redcliffe for his first venture.

The restaurant will be a “celebration of fire-based cooking and local ingredients”, including the very best meat from farms in the South West, according to the paper. It will even have its own in-house butcher and regular live music.

He told it: “Pasture is about fine dining for everyone with slick, engaging service, top-quality food and a team whose knowledge is as strong as its passion.

“Our restaurant is set for theatre and our open kitchen will showcase charcoal grills and dry-ageing cabinets displaying our aged beef.”

Although the menu will feature fish and vegetarian options, the main focus at Pasture will be steak, with beef sourced from South West farms where cattle are raised on pasture, the paper reported.

“Pasture-raised beef not only tastes better but has a far less impact on the environment as opposed to grain-fed beef, which uses lots of water and produces Co2,” he said.

“We are only buying suckled native breeds of beef and our butcher dry-ages it for a minimum of 35 days before being delivered to us in whole cuts. We will further age the beef in our ageing cabinets and our in-house butchers will then cut the steaks fresh for each service.”

Mr Elliott said that he learned a lot working for Jamie Oliver and he’s using this knowledge to help launch his solo venture.

“Jamie has taught me the importance of surrounding myself with great people and building really strong relationships with suppliers, all of which are fundamental for a successful restaurant and business,” he said.

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