TOP chef Jack Ingram returned for one night only to the West Dorset restaurant where he started his career washing up.
He fell in love with cooking after starting, aged 14, at Le Petit Canard in Maiden Newton before moving to work at award winning restaurants in Australia.
But the 26-year-old returned from Melbourne to serve a special menu with his old mentor Gerry Craig while on holiday in the UK and Europe.
Jack said: “It went really well.
“I had my first ever job in the kitchen there 10 years ago.
“I grew up in the village. I’ve been gone a long time now although we have kept in touch.
“I started there at 14 and 15 doing the dish washing.”
Jack joined Gerry and Cathy for the one-off service.
He cooked a special menu with Gerry and went to speak to diners afterwards.
The menu included cured salmon, pressed pork, a yogurt sorbet, beef fillet, spiced bread with pear, ginger ice cream, and caramel with hazelnut chocolate truffle.
Jack said: “It was strange to be back but a lot of fun. The kitchen was a lot smaller than I remember it but it was good to be back in it.
“It was good to work with Gerry and Cathy again who are both really professional.”
He added: “It was really nice for Gerry and Cathy to let me have their kitchen and do what I wanted for one night.
Jack now works for the Vue de Monde restaurant group in Melbourne, Australia, and is currently based at its French-inspired Bistro Vue in the city centre.
The Vue de Monde is rated as among the top restaurants in Australia.
Jack has lived in Melbourne for four years after he first visited Australia when travelling.
He worked his way around before becoming sponsored for a position in South Australia and then gaining sponsorship to work in Melbourne.
ON THE MENU
Cured salmon, cucumber, fennel, dill (pickled cucumber, crisp fennel, avocado puree)
Pork shoulder pressing, apple, celery, mustard dressing (Apple puree, pickled turnip, celery crudité)
Yogurt sorbet, cucumber granita
Beef fillet, mushroom, parsnip (Smoked mushroom, mushroom fricassee, parsnip puree)
Spiced bread, pear, ginger ice cream (Pear puree, caramel pear balls)
Caramel, hazelnut chocolate truffle (Petit four served with coffee)