Finding out he’d been successfully appointed as SK Chilled Food’s newest Development Chef was an early birthday present for 25-year-old Jack Hunter.
The chef was given the good news of his appointment the day before his birthday and was officially part of the team just three days later!
Jack comes with an impressive pedigree having worked with Andrew Fairlie at Gleneagles Hotel and having previously owned and run his own restaurant in his home town of Hartlepool. He has been cooking since he was 15 when he would attend school during the week and work at the weekends. However, his cooking career at home started much earlier than that.
Jack’s Mum, in his words, is a “dreadful” cook and he said, to ensure a tasty meal, he’d look after the cooking even preparing the Christmas dinner for everyone from the age of just eight.
It served as inspiration and Jack made his way to Hartlepool College where he completed a course and was named Student of the Year and his prize was a visit to Gleneagles Hotel, where he was snapped up by the kitchen.
On returning to Hartlepool Jack decided to put his fantastic experience to its best use and, with a group of friends, opened a restaurant called Hunter’s at the Marina where they served 50 covers a night.
Jack then decided to take a step away from cooking and entered the world of data analysis before deciding that he very much missed the creativity and energy of the kitchen.
He said: “I had never had a 9-5 job before and for that reason, the data analysis role was great, but I really missed being in that creative environment. However, I knew I didn’t want to run my own restaurant again, but having run my own, I didn’t think I could work in anyone else’s.
“The role at SK is really exciting because there’s so much room for creativity, it really uses my skills and it’s a chance for me to learn about a whole new aspect of the industry. It’s brilliant to see something being taken from concept and creation right through to the end of the line and production and to see it on the shelves.
“I would absolutely recommend the role of Development Chef as it’s the best of both worlds – you get to be creative and work in an exciting environment, but it’s got a work/life balance too. That’s hard to get in this industry.”