Late on Friday afternoon I received the press release that head chef Matt Cheal is leaving Simpsons to set up his own restaurant.
The 34 year old chef and his father have taken over what was formerly Edmunds in Henley-in-Arden. Matt’s restaurant, Cheal’s of Henley, will undergo a complete refurbishment and will offer fine dining in a relaxed and informal setting.
Matt said: “I’m extremely excited to be heading up my own restaurant and I feel that the time is right. I’ve spent an amazing 16 years at Simpsons, progressing up the ranks thanks to the guidance of Luke and Andreas. There’s no better training ground than Simpsons and I’ve loved my time there so it had to be the right place for me even to consider leaving. Henley-in-Arden has a lot to offer a chef and we have a lot to offer residents there too.”
Matt’s final day at Simpsons will be Sunday 9 August and he plans to open Cheal’s of Henley mid to late September.
After so long at Simpsons it must be a wrench to leave, but the dream of opening your own restaurant is the goal of many great chefs, Matt amongst them. We have yet to hear who will be replacing Matt, but with the refurb due to be complete in September it will be an exciting few months ahead for Simpsons.