Gareth Ward is a head chef and co-owner of Ynyshir, the most highly-awarded restaurant in Wales. County Durham born and raised, Gareth started his cooking career at 16, working in kitchens in the North East England.
“I’m originally from the North East of England, and I’d worked in several Michelin-starred restaurants, so I knew how to cook. By the time I came here, my mind had been unlocked. For me now, anything can happen. There are no rules, no guidelines. As long as it tastes amazing, then we’ll do it. And that’s what makes us different.”
In September 2016, Gareth was made chef-patron of Ynyshir, at which point he and his partner, general manager at the restaurant, made the decision to convert from a hotel to a Restaurant with Rooms.
In 2022, the restaurant was awarded a second star in the Michelin Guide for Great Britain and Ireland. The restaurant’s location between the Welsh coast and Snowdonia National Park allows Gareth to use only the best ingredients from Wales and surrounding areas – such as Welsh lamb and British shellfish – as well as sourcing the finest produce from around the world, including Japanese beef and Spanish tuna.
Ingredient led, flavour driven, fat fuelled, Meat obsessed
That’s the unapologetic mantra that’s written on the wall of the restaurant as you walk in. He is also renowned for his use of Japanese techniques and ingredients like miso, dashi, mirin and soy which enable him to get as much flavour as possible out of the other ingredients and keep the dishes light.
“I want people to travel to Ynyshir from all over Europe. My dream is to make Ynyshir a destination restaurant that people travel to for an experience they can’t have anywhere else. Because this part of the world, this part of Wales, this building – everything about it deserves to be at the highest level and I won’t stop until we get there”.
Restaurant web site: https://ynyshir.co.uk/
Restaurant address: Ynyshir Restaurant and Rooms, Eglwys Fach, Machynlleth SY20 8TA, United Kingdom