James & Georgia Sommerin

James & Georgia Sommerin

James says:

“I knew from a young age that I wanted to be a chef, cooking with my late grandmother instilled the passion I have for cooking.

I had my first job in an Italian restaurant in Newport, Chez Ciovanni, I worked on a Saturday washing dishes. My dad though it would be a deterrent. It wasn’t. If anything it made me want it even more. You have to start somewhere.

When I was 16 I left school and got a job working at the Cwrt Bleddyn in Usk, I stayed there until I was a offered a job in Scotland at Farleyer House, as scary as it was moving 100’s of miles away from my home when I was only 16, it was the making of me and it was here, under the guidance of my head chef Richard Lyth that I truly learnt how to be a chef. I still call Richard, Chef , to this day.

During my time in Scotland, I met and married Louise and we had a daughter Georgia.

After being married for about 6 months, I was getting really home sick, Lou and I decided to move to Wales, back home for me.

I started working at the Crown at Whitebrook in August 2020 as Sous Chef and in 2003 I became Head Chef, I attained my first Michelin Star in 2007.

After being head chef for a number of years I decided, with Lou’s support, to go solo and open our own restaurant, Home. A very hard decision to make and there have certainly been a lot of obstacles and life lessons along the way but I wouldn’t change it.”

Georgia says: “

I have been cooking since I was 14, I started helping out with my dad on a Saturday to earn some pocket money, I found that I really loved cooking.

At the age of 16 I went to college to study sports science, I wasn’t 100% sure cooking was what I wanted to do as a career, I quickly realised that it was and thats when I started working with my dad full time. I became sous chef for him in 2018, I had to work my way up the ladder like everyone else and get treated the same as everyone else, there was no advantages of being the boss’s daughter! In the kitchen I was an employee like everyone else and I preferred it that way.

When the pandemic hit, we decided as a family that rather than letting the food in the restaurant go to waste we would cook everything and donate to the staff who were working tirelessly, we were then approached by a businessman to be part of a few chefs/businesses to continue cooking meals for the staff in the hospitals around Cardiff and the Vale, we continued do this until we were told to stop. Unfortunately my dad had to permanently  close the restaurant through the pandemic which was heart breaking for him, but, as the strong person he is and who I look up to, he lifted himself up and we offered a fine dining take away up until businesses could re-open. We found another premises, on a much smaller scale, and decided that we would have a family run business and Home was born. It is myself and my dad in the kitchen and we cater for approximately 24 guests, its small, cosy and intimate – like being at home!

In 2020 I was in the Welsh heat for Great British Menu, I loved the experience of being part of the show, although at the time it was all very daunting and being only 21 at the time I was one of the youngest contestants they have had on the show.

I love the pastry section, and love coming up with new desserts for the menu, only being the two of us in the kitchen we both cook all sections and menu planning is a joint effort.

One of the proudest moments in my career so far was Home being awarded a Michelin Star in February this year after only being open 5 months. Knowing it was only myself and dad in the kitchen and all family that work front of house and after such a hard couple of years it really was a highlight for me.”

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