Meet the Chef: Chris Scott, Sherwood Queenstown

Chris Scott is a highly skilled and accomplished Executive Chef bringing his culinary expertise to Sherwood, an eco-friendly hotel and restaurant showcasing panoramic views of Lake Wakatipu and the Remarkables Mountain Range in the heart of Queenstown.

Scott first discovered his calling to the kitchen at an early age. "The energy and pressure of service felt like home for me. Having an incredibly active brain, it was the calm in the chaos," he said.

Back in his days, the career path to becoming a chef was tough and demanding work reserved for a certain breed. At the time, London was the place to be to learn, and so there he set off to embark on his culinary journey.

"Money wasn't a thing for me. Just the opportunity to absorb and become the best I could be was everything."

Over the years, Scott travelled a lot and spent a couple of years in Melbourne. Since then, he has owned and operated his own place and been a part of some great restaurants.

At Sherwood, Scott has curated a mouth-watering menu, which incorporates fresh organic produce picked daily from the property's biodynamic vegetable gardens.

"My style of food is created using seasonal produce from our kitchen garden paired with local, sustainable proteins," he explained. "It is really about using what is growing at the time, offering up hyper-seasonal menus to give our guests an experience of the seasons."

Recently, Scott has experimented with vegan and plant-based dishes using locally-sourced biodynamic grains, different kinds of nut butter, and nutritional yeast to emulate a winter risotto. He has also been working with New-Zealand-grown wheat in their sourdough, extruded and fresh egg pasta dishes and setting up a fermentation arm to preserve late summer products for future use in menus.

Scott's favourite part of working in the hospitality landscape is the connections he makes and being able to showcase their extraordinary region and produce to guests

The past couple of years has been challenging for the industry with the COVID-19 outbreak.

"A redirection in our offering with a focus on quality, consistency to the local market and a whole lot of resilience, grit and a few tears have been had for sure!"

According to Scott, the hospitality industry can expect to experience labour shortages and a lack of skilled workers in the future. However, for those planning to embark on a journey into the hospitality scene, he has some words of advice.

"The old saying, the harder you work, the luckier you get! As with anything, you have to have a real passion and drive in this game to succeed. Every hardship and failure will become a success if you stick to your goals and run with your dreams.