It’s hard to believe that more than 12 months have flown by for head chef, Oliver Greenwood, since he joined our team.
At the age of 28, the Grassington-based chef has already experienced a varied culinary career. As he explains: “I’m a Yorkshireman born and bred, originally from Brighouse, and I’ve now settled in beautiful Grassington.
“I didn’t have a clear career path when I was younger, but I always knew I had a passion for food.”
After achieving three A-Levels at school, Oliver enrolled onto a Hospitality and Catering apprenticeship course at Kirklees College. During his studies, he also worked at a well-known restaurant in Brighouse.
He continues: “I started as a kitchen porter at a fine dining restaurant called Eric’s in Huddersfield, eventually working my way up to sous chef.
“After three years here, I was ready for a change. I was still living at home with my parents at the time, so I was excited about moving into my own place when I was offered a job at Grassington House in 2017.”
The Move to North Yorkshire
Oliver’s first role in the kitchen was chef de partie – running the larder section of the kitchen.
He says: “When I moved to Grassington House, many people thought I was taking a step back in my career, but I didn’t see it like that. Grassington House is an AA Rosette, award-winning restaurant, and I knew working here would mean I’d gain invaluable experience. I gained a new skill-set here and I really loved it.
“Here I also met some wonderful people – including my partner, Alice. We welcomed our son, Harry, into the world in 2020. It was a challenging time as Harry was diagnosed with Down’s Syndrome, which meant he needed more support. It made me realise I wanted a more flexible work-life balance. Then in March 2022 we found we were expecting our second child – which is when I had to really reassess my situation.”
A Passion for Bean Loved
Oliver continues: “Alice and I were returning customers of Bean Loved for many years. It is such a warm and friendly place to visit, and I already knew of the owner, Wes Bond.
“I saw a job advertised on their Instagram page for a chef and I just went for it. It seemed like the perfect opportunity for me.”
Oliver made the transition to Bean Loved and it’s been more than 12 months since he started. He adds: “One of the things I love most about working here is the fast-paced trade and the different style of cooking. The menu is creative, fun and flexible.
“The atmosphere in the kitchen and behind the barista bar is always positive and happy. Not only is the team full of energy, but visitors to Bean Loved make the place come to life too.”
And the challenges?
“I’ve had to adapt my way of working – from managing just one section of the menu at Grassington House to running the entire kitchen here; but it has been a rewarding challenge,” says Oliver.
“I work closely with the management team and owner, Wes, to develop new and innovative dishes for the menu based on customer feedback and my experience.”
“Life has a way of surprising you…”
Oliver is really excited about his future at Bean Loved. “We communicate well as a team, share ideas, challenges and solutions, and that has a positive impact on how we work, and the food and drink we serve,” he says.
“I never imagined myself being here, but life has a way of surprising you, doesn’t it?
“Trust and loyalty are key values for me – in my personal life and in my work life. Bean Loved shares this ethos and that’s why for me, it truly is the right place to be.”