Meet the executive chef: Dean Wilson Hartles – The Restaurant Group

PAGE 24 Dean Wilson-Hartles web version

Industry suppliers currently have the chance to vote for the UK’s best executive chef of the year in one of the most highly-anticipated categories of the 2022 FEJ Awards, with The Restaurant Group’s Dean Wilson Hartles taking one of the five finalist spaces as we approach the ceremony next week.

The Executive Chef of the Year accolade honours the culinary stars involved in everything from creative menu development and food sourcing to kitchen specification and roll-outs.

Voters now have the chance to discover exactly why Dean has been selected as a finalist in the category.

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Dean Wilson Hartles, The Restaurant Group

Experienced chef Dean Wilson Hartles was recently promoted to director of food and drink at The Restaurant Group, handing him more strategic responsibility in terms of driving partnerships, securing tenders for concessions and shaping overall brand development. Improving operational execution and reducing menu complexity has been a key focus for TRG and Dean and his team have risen to the challenge thanks to a relentless focus on innovation and identifying future trends. Dean has been instrumental in refining Frankie & Benny’s food proposition post-Covid, worked with an artisan baker to improve bread products across the group and overseen the expansion of its vegan offer. An individual who always acknowledges the importance of the team around him, Dean remains inspired by successful menu executions and seeing chefs grow into leaders.

This year’s contest for the Executive Chef of the Year award, sponsored by Panasonic, is equally fierce and with the final week of voting taking place this week, it is still all to play for.

Suppliers that haven’t yet cast their vote can do so HERE.

This year’s other outstanding finalists include:

– Lee Brooks, McMullen & Sons

– Simon Hellier, Amadeus

– Stuart Duff, Hilton Hotels

– Terry McDowell, Away Resorts

The outcome of the FEJ Awards, which will be held on Wednesday 14 September, is entirely decided by the industry, with individuals working for both suppliers and operators entitled to vote on the finalists that have been shortlisted.

Professionals working for business on the supplier side of the market are eligible to vote for the operators they think deserve the greatest recognition, while operators (such as restaurant chains, pub groups, food-to-go outlets and caterers) are eligible to vote in the supplier categories.


Voting will remain open until Friday 9 September.

The 2022 FEJ Awards ceremony and gala dinner takes place on Wednesday 14 September, the first evening of the Commercial Kitchen show, at the Hilton Canary Wharf.

To secure tickets or tables for the event please click HERE or alternatively contact


Tags : Dean Wilson HartlesExecutive Chef of the YearFEJ Awards 2022The Restaurant Group
Joshua Walton

The author Joshua Walton

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