Paul O’Neill, Head Chef Cliveden House, Taplow.
Trained at Pierre Gagnaire, Paris.
In 2013 Paul became the 30th Roux Scholar – he beat off tough competition from the five other finalists who all prepared ‘Salmon Chambord style with Sauce Genevoise’. For the first time in the long history of the competition Paul’s win was revealed on television. Watch TV provided an unmissable opportunity for viewers to see behind the scenes of The Roux Scholarship 2013 as it entered its milestone 30th year.
With the guidance of the Roux family Paul chose to do his stage at Pierre Gagnaire in Paris, “He has done some amazing things for the industry, I hope to learn a great deal about balance of flavours, ingredients and most of all modern techniques,” he said. See the film of Michel and Alain’s visit to see Paul at Pierre Gagnaire.
Paul joined the team at the luxurious Berwick Hotel, Bristol as Head Chef of Hattusa restaurant in 2014.
Paul O’Neill began his career in professional kitchens aged just 15. At school he struggled academically and so decided to swap the classroom for the kitchen. He sent his CV to numerous hotels, but it was the prestigious Claridge’s in London which gave him his big break offering him a training placement in their kitchens.
While Paul may not have excelled at school, it soon became apparent that he had found his vocation and by the age of 22 he was working as a Senior Sous Chef for a 4 Red Star Property with 2 rosettes.
It was during his time as a Sous Chef at Ashdown Park Hotel in Surrey that Paul decided to take part in the Roux Scholarship competition. For the first time ever the competition was televised and in June 2013 he was named as the 30th Roux Scholar live on television, putting him among the ranks of culinary heavyweights such as Andrew Fairlie, Simon Hulstone and Sat Bains.
Michel Roux Jr said: “Paul is undoubtedly a great chef and an assiduous one at that but his unflappable nature along with his generous comportment make him the perfect Roux Scholar.”
In November 2017, Paul joined the team at Cliveden House working as Head Chef under Executive Chef and Roux Scholar 2002, André Garrett.
Michel & Alain visit Paul at Pierre Gagnaire, filmed by Chandos Elletson for The Roux Scholarship.