World-renowned chef Michel Roux Jr to cook at Cheshire pub

Michel Roux Jr. with Chester chef Gary Usher -Credit:Gary Usher
Michel Roux Jr. with Chester chef Gary Usher -Credit:Gary Usher

World-renowned chef Michel Roux Jr. is to cook at a rural Cheshire pub for one night only. Michel, joined by daughter Emily, are the latest names to be announced for the 'Guest Chef Series' at The White Horse Pub in Churton.

The pub, owned by Sticky Walnut chef Gary Usher, has previously welcomed famous TV chefs Tom Kerridge and Angela Hartnett to the kitchen. The bistro-pub, opened in March 2023, welcomes up to three guest chefs a month.

Those chefs are amongst the finest in the country, many drawn from Michelin-starred restaurants. Although Michel Roux Jr. and daughter Emily Roux are not set to cook at The White Horse until January 2025, it is already fully booked, with tickets at £100 per person.

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Chef and owner Gary Usher said: "I feel very lucky and honoured. It sounds like a silly word for having a chef come to cook with you; but, in my profession, it is an honour to be supported by someone like Michel Roux.

"It makes you feel really good about what you’re doing. If someone at the top of the profession wants to come and work with us it’s a real honour."

The White Horse in Churton opened in 2023
Gary Usher's The White Horse in Churton, near Chester -Credit:Manchester Evening News

Gary said Michel agreed to cook at The White Horse after dining at Kala, Gary's Manchester restaurant. Gary first started his guest chef evenings in 2013 at Sticky Walnut, his first restaurant in Hoole opened 2011.

Tom Kerridge was one of the first guest chefs at the bistro. He has since cooked at Gary's restaurants in Didsbury and Liverpool, as well as the White Horse.

Gary restarted the guest chef nights last year after opening the White Horse last year. He said: "It’s been brilliant. We did the first one in August, and that was with Calum Franklin, who does work with pastry.

"He specialises in pies and beef Wellington. They are not just any pies or beef Wellingtons, he is absolutely unique, amazing, and meticulous.

"Since then it has been a wild ride. We had people like Tom Kerridge and Angela Hartnett come and cook with us, and we thought ‘How do we carry on from this? We’ve reached a pinnacle here.’

"We just seem to have been really lucky, and it’s snowballed, and now it’s a big part of what we do at the pub."

Gary added: "Times are hard at the minute, and everyone knows that from their home lives. It’s the same in business. It’s been hard the last two years, and so the guest chef evenings has just come out of us trying to be the best that we can and do the best that we can. We’re trying to be creative and do things so people don’t forget us, keeping us relevant.

Gary says he hopes the guest chef series is bringing something to the area it has not experienced before. He said: "The regulars and the locals are our bread and butter. They’re the people who support us on a cold winter night when no-one else has made the journey up.

"It’s those people that we really want to make happy, and I feel the guest chef evenings does just that; it makes them feel that they’ve got a really special local on their hands. With these chefs coming up, I think they are really happy about it."

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