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Home > Meet The Chefs > The Derwent Hotel, Torquay

Andy Johnston

Head Chef, The Derwent Hotel


In the beautiful holiday hotspot of Torquay, Head Chef Andy Johnston has worked at The Derwent Hotel for over 20 years. With a varying customer base desiring a holiday offering value-for-money but good quality and fresh locally sourced food, Andy enjoys the challenge of keeping the hotel’s menu fresh and appealing.

Catering for an average of 350 dinner covers a day, Andy’s biggest concern is to stay cost effective in the face of escalating food prices, whilst remaining competitive amid the myriad of hotels in the area. Andy’s solution is to ensure the food offering at the hotel continually meets and exceeds his customers’ demands and changing trends, trusting only the best quality and freshest ingredients to deliver the results he needs. None more so than Tilda Easy Cook Basmati Rice, which Andy serves in two formats every day – on the self service buffet and also in specific menu dishes. Andy declares, “Tilda Easy Cook Basmati Rice really matters to me as it always delivers perfect fluffy grains. It is perfect for the self service buffet as it holds incredibly well without losing texture or flavour. It is a staple requirement in the restaurant, we get through a 5kg bag each day! We also use it in a lot of our more specific menu dishes as it always delivers a consistent result no matter how it is used.”

Andy also uses Tilda Easy Cook Basmati & Wild Rice expressing, “Tilda Easy Cook Basmati & Wild is the perfect accompaniment to many of our supplement dishes.” A popular dish featuring on the menu is Medallions of Local Pork with Black Pudding, Potato Rosti and Apple & Calvados Sauce on a bed of Scented Sage & Onion Basmati & Wild Rice topped with Fried Leeks, Andy comments, “Tilda Easy Cook Basmati & Wild Rice in this dish adds great visual appeal and that extra dimension, which in turn adds more value. The rice is also so easy to cook and has a wonderful texture and nutty taste, it can really help make a meal extra special.”

Continually trusting Tilda to help him deliver the cost effective yet uncompromising results he relies on every day Andy concludes, “I will always use Tilda Easy Cook Basmati Rice, it is a friend I have grown up with.”


Tilda Easy Cook Basmati and Easy Cook Basmati & Wild Rice are very cost effective ingredients to help in menu planning as there is no wastage and you can always rely on the quality.

You can serve Tilda Easy Cook Basmati Rice in a number of ways, it is very versatile and such good quality that it holds up extremely well on the self-server but is also perfect in specific menu dishes.

Tilda Easy Cook Basmati & Wild Rice is the perfect ingredient to add an extra bit of interest and texture to a dish, it helps give the dish an extra bit of value.