ERIC Paxman is serving up success.
The 33-year-old proprietor and head chef at Eric’s Restaurant began his training at Huddersfield Technical College, where he gained a distinction before working in local restaurants in the town – and travelling and training under the best in the world.
He worked in London under Marco Pierre White at L’Escargot, developing his craft and learning from Marco’s fine and classical style.
After four years as head chef at a local restaurant, he worked under Bill Grainger – star ofTV’s Saturday Kitchen – at his restaurants in Sydney, Australia, where Bill mentored Eric on creating good food with a modern twist.
Returning from Australia, Eric worked as a general manager at the same restaurant where he had previously been head chef before opening Eric’s in 2010 at Lidget Street, Lindley.
He said: “There had been three restaurants previously run from the premises, the most recent closing in July, 2010. I entered into a lease with the landlord in September, 2010, and carried out a major refurbishment, including structural alterations to provide more space, replacement of shopfront and door, rewiring, new flooring, replacement of all seating and tables and new furnishings throughout.
“I also replaced the majority of the kitchen equipment to provide a first class facility to allow me to be in a position to produce first class food.”
More than 300 people attended the launch event on November 4, 2010, and the doors opened to the public the following day.
Said Eric: “The response has been amazing. When many businesses are suffering as a result of the economic conditions, Eric’s has gone from strength to strength and the feedback from our customers, many of whom have returned on numerous occasions, has been unbelievable.”
In October last year, Eric’s expanded with the acquisition of the shop next door, which was converted into a bar and reception area.
Eric’s Restaurant has been the subject of more than 250 reviews on Tripadvisor – more than 200 of them rating it as “excellent”. In August this year, the restaurant was listed in the Good Food Guide for 2013. Profits and turnover have increased each year since the launch – and employee numbers have also risen.
Eric has also become something of a local celebrity in the village – and was asked to officially open the new kitchens at Lindley Infant School.
Said Eric: “In building the business, we have concentrated on three ingredients – food, service and ambience. Wherever possible, we have sourced the food locally.”