Will Holland, Executive Chef

‘Predicted to be one of the 10 most influential chefs of the next decade’ by The Good Food Guide, Will Holland has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants since the age of 18 and was awarded his own Michelin star before he was 30 years old. On November 13th 2023 he won the coveted title of Chef of the Year (fewer than 250 covers) at the prestigious Hotel Cateys. Taking a relaxed approach, the focus of his food is on celebrating exemplary British ingredients, using excellent technique resulting in outstanding dishes.

Will wanted to be a chef for as long as he can remember. He grew up in Bristol in a household with an appreciation of good food and clearly recalls his first time eating Michelin-starred food, at two-star Lettonie with Chef Martin Blunos – an experience that still resonates today.

When Will was 13 he started working at a local butcher’s shop after school and at weekends, where he stayed until leaving home. Will believes this early exposure to the food industry gave him a valuable insight and understanding which have stayed with him to this day. By 14 years old he was certain his future lay in becoming a chef. Inspired, Will organised for his secondary school work experience to be with Chef Michael Kitts at the Swallow Royal Hotel where the camaraderie and brotherhood of the kitchen brigade hooked him. After two years at catering college, Will secured his first job at Homewood Park in Bath working under Chef Gary Jones, now Raymond Blanc’s Executive Chef at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons.

With a determination to succeed, Will subsequently held positions at some of the finest establishments across the UK including many influential years at Gravetye Manor in Sussex. Will joined Alan Murchison’s L’Ortolan Restaurant in Berkshire in 2004 where he was promoted to head chef within a few months. In 2007 he opened L’Ortolan’s sister restaurant La Bécasse in Ludlow. It was here that Will earned his first Michelin star just 18 months after opening the restaurant.

2014 marked a change for Will with the opening of Coast Restaurant in Pembrokeshire, Wales. Coast was received with wide acclaim, including being named ‘AA Restaurant of the Year for Wales 2015-2016’.

Will joined The Atlantic Hotel as Executive Chef in October 2017, starting a new chapter for dining at the hotel. Will is passionate about the use of local, seasonal ingredients believing that amazing dishes are the result of amazing produce. Inspired by the rich and varied ingredients found on Jersey and in its waters, his menus are a celebration of the land and sea.

Over the years, Will has appeared on numerous national television programmes including as guest chef on Saturday Kitchen with James Martin, beating the Hairy Bikers on their Food Tour of Britain and was the central region champion on BBC’s Great British Menu. Named ‘UK Restaurant Chef of the Year 2016’ by The Craft Guild of Chefs, in Autumn 2017 Will appeared in the grand final of the National Chef of the Year competition.