Ashley Palmer-Watts leaves Heston Blumenthal’s Dinner Group after 20 years

8 years after launching Dinner by Heston, Head Chef Ashley Palmer-Watts and Heston’s right-hand man of 20 years has announced he will be leaving the restaurant group

Updated on 02 January 2020 • Written By Emma Mitchell

Ashley Palmer-Watts leaves Heston Blumenthal’s Dinner Group after 20 years

In an unexpected announcement on Twitter celebrated chef Ashley Palmer-Watts has announced that with the arrival of the new decade he will be making a dramatic departure from Heston Blumethal’s eminent restaurant group that includes the world-renowned Fat Duck in Bray and 2-Michelin-starred Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in London and Melbourne.

The ambitious chef first began working for the group back in 2001 at The Fat Duck, becoming head chef within 3 years and overseeing the restaurant’s ascension from a 5-man team to a 3 Michelin Starred gastronomic institution which has become famous across the globe. In 2011 Palmer-Watts was at the forefront of launching Dinner by Heston in the Mandarin Oriental London Hyde Park as executive chef and has been accredited for the restaurant’s quick attainment of 2 Michelin Stars within two years.

In the exclusive announcement on social media Palmer-Watts stated:

“After 20 incredible years, it is time for me to move on from Bray for a new chapter and to take on fresh challenges. I will initially be spending some time with my family as I prepare for the new and exciting journey ahead. I am eternally grateful for the knowledge and memories I have gathered working with Heston and the group and would like to thank all the brilliant people past and present that have made the last 20 years nothing short of extraordinary. I wish everyone continued success for the future and I am very proud to have been part of the magic of Heston’s world.”

The announcement follows shortly after it was revealed that Blumenthal’s Australian outpost could be liquidated over wage theft, but whether or not this had any influence on Palmer-Watt’s decision to leave the group remains unclear.

Want to find out more about the gastronomic maestro check out our guide to Heston Blumenthal.