Chef proprietor Mark initially trained as a Geologist (no rock cake puns) and Petroleum Engineer. On the first day of the millennium he had an epiphany and decided to follow his dream and passion of cooking. He has trained at the Bournemouth and Poole College catering department with a world wide reputation.
He has worked in the brigades and kitchens of Europe’s top chefs. Stéphane Carrade at Chez Ruffet, Raymond Blancs’ Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons, with Shaun Hill at the Montagu Arms, Alan Murchison from L’Ortolan, Luke Mathews and not least Pierre Chevillard at Chewton Glen. For some years Mark Hartstone has been Pierres’ Sous chef at Pebble Beach helping him to win the Remy Martin South East restaurant of the year 2007 and other critical acclaim.
Mark has reached the final in 4 national chef competitions. He has won both regional competitions and the 2006 prestigious National Seafood Recipe Challenge. The competition is the most popular and well- regarded chefs competition in the country. His prize was a gastronomic tour of Norway, working alongside Swedish chef Anders Blomkvist of the famous Store Norske Fiskekompani in the largest town of the Arctic circle.
Since opening 11 years ago his own establishment in Cranborne with his wife, he has won “Dorset Best cheese board in 2010 and 2011”, “Dorset Best Recipe at the Taste of Dorset Award” and was twice under the three Finalists of Dorset Taste Awards and is in the Good Food Guide 2013 voted in by the guests.