New trio herald the next era for Fischer’s fine dining restaurant

They have worked in some of the UK’s most highly regarded restaurants.

By Ellen Beardmore
Wednesday, 20 February, 2019, 11:49
The new team at Fischer's

Head chef James Payne, sous chef Adam Thackeray and sommelier Matthew Davison have experience at Gordon Ramsay’s Claridge’s in London, the Michelin starred Gleaneagles restaurant in Scotland and Sat Bains in Nottingham. 

But one thing unites them. All are from the Derbyshire region, and all three are now returning to lead its most well-known restaurant, the Michelin starred Fischer’s Baslow Hall, in its 30th year. 

Family run Fischer’s was opened in 1989 by Max and Susan Fischer, Max remains executive chef, and son Neil is part of the running of the fine dining hotspot and hotel. 

Neil said of the new team: “Derbyshire is a beautiful place and we have a lot of people externally settling here, but I always think it’s a good thing for people to come home. It took a lot of energy and and research to find this team, people like this are not ten a penny.”

Fischer’s received its first Michelin star in its fifth year of business, and has retained the star ever since, garnering an impressive list of foodie accolades to boot. What is the next goal when standards are so high?

Neil said the focus was on ‘continuing to innovate in terms of the food, the service, the drinks and being able to offer a gastronomic experience.”

He added: “We are looking to develop, we want to open new properties.

“I’m not saying we’re not aiming for it (a second Michelin star) but what I am saying is fine dining is a science, and an art form, and the team want to develop themselves forward – if that means a second star, fantastic. But in the same context, we are in the business for the guest’s experience.

“I know a lot of places will open and say they are going to get one star or two stars, it’s not about that.”

Looking to the team, new head chef James Payne replaces Rupert Rowley in a promotion from sous chef.

He said he planned to work closely with the ‘brilliant community of local producers’ in Derbyshire. 

Fresh sous chef Adam Thackeray studied under Mick Burke at Sheffield College and was introduced to Fischer’s by the award winning tutor. He worked at Fischer’s for three years before moving to Gleneagles, then returning for the new role. 

Sommelier Matthew Davison, from Sat Bains, hopes to work with local and global producers to source the best wines to pair with Fischer’s tasting menus. 

He said: “We are constantly trying to create the most memorable occasion possible by enabling guests to elevate their dining experience, and turning a glass of wine into ‘that’ glass of wine is key.”