First ever Chef in Residence at RHS Chelsea Flower Show

Company: Mark Gregory

Savills announces partnership with Michelin-green-starred chef Sam Buckley, one of just 23 in the UK, for its return to Chelsea Flower Show (22 to 27 May 2023).

The Savills ‘plot to plate’ garden speaks to the firm’s commitment to promoting sustainability. Designed by award-winning garden designer Mark Gregory, it showcases ‘edimental’ planting and will include the show’s first ever working kitchen. Chef Sam Buckley will be foraging and cooking daily from the garden during the show.

After working in the kitchen with Gary Rhodes during college Sam went on to work for Paul Kitching at Juniper, then Manchester’s only Michelin-starred restaurant. Sam is quickly gathering a reputation for his ‘responsive’ style of cooking whereby dishes are created fresh from what’s growing and ready on any given day. This means his menus are in tune with the seasons, varied and ever changing. Sam’s sustainable, forward-thinking and ethically conscious loft-style restaurant Where The Light Gets In, in his hometown of Stockport, serves seasonal tasting menus made with Britain’s best ingredients.

Ingredients are only used when they’re at the peak of their season, sourced from farmers and fishermen who go beyond the free-range, organic certifications and are contributing to the sustainability of food production. Sam also grows ingredients on The Landing, a rooftop kitchen garden in the town centre. He was awarded a Green Michelin Star in 2021, the accolade recognises restaurants at the forefront of sustainability.

During Chelsea Flower Show 2023, Sam will be bringing his culinary philosophy to The Savills Garden, where he will be cooking in its outdoor working kitchen. Working with sustainable suppliers and fresh British produce, fruit and vegetables, Sam will create multi-course menus that respond to what’s available in May, with flavours from the garden. Sam will be foraging from the garden, including cropping from the fruit and veg plots, while waste reduction will be at the core of his creative process, with offcuts being reimagined for dishes the following day.

Following the show, in keeping with its sustainability commitment, Savills will work with the national charity Shaw Trust to relocate the garden in Nottinghamshire. Additionally, Savills will work with existing charity partner Rethink Food, an organisation focused on educating school children on food security, to share learnings from the garden.

Richard Rees, Managing Director at Savills, comments: “We are excited to be working with Mark and Sam to deliver Chelsea Flower Show’s first ever working kitchen experience, in a garden that’s both sanctuary and source of the best in flavours and nutrition. 

“With its emphasis on using reclaimed and environmentally sensitive landscaping materials sourced as locally as possible, and showcasing the best in seasonal planting, this project has natural synergy with our commitment to promoting sustainable development through our work with clients, suppliers and local communities.”

Sam Buckley, chef and owner of Where The Light Gets In, comments: “I was thrilled to be asked to cook on the Savills Garden, especially as we’ll be making history with the first working kitchen on a show garden at Chelsea.  Mark Gregory’s planting scheme will offer such a range of flavours, allowing me to create a new lunch menu each day of the show.  This plays very much to the responsive cooking style followed in my restaurant, where menus are inspired by local produce and whatever is ripe on The Landing, our own growing space in Stockport.”

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