Neil is one of Scotland's most passionate chefs who describes cooking as an "emotional experience
that uses all the senses".
Born into a family of chefs, it was his granny's soup that first inspired a young Neil to get behind the stove, and inspires him still. Like the soup, the menus at Cafe St Honoré make the most of good, honest
ingredients cooked simply.
Neil is joined in the kitchen by a team of equally passionate chefs who can't wait to see what will be delivered each day, and what they can create from it. They pride themselves on producing everything in-house using ingredients sourced from local producers and suppliers.
In 2011, Neil was named the Scottish Restaurant Awards ‘Chef of the Year’, he is a member of the Slow Food UK Chef Alliance and his restaurant holds Sustainable Restaurant Association 3-star champion status. He regularly demonstrates his skills at a broad range of events across the UK as well as appearing on BBC Radio Scotland’s Kitchen Cafe.
He writes a recipe column in the Scotsman’s Weekend Life magazine.
"I adore using cold-pressed rapeseed oil in the dishes I create at Cafe St Honoré. It’s so versatile and its packed full of good things. It doesn't burn when frying, it’s rich in Omega-3 and with its buttery taste and deep golden colour it's wonderful in dressings. It’s a Scottish product to be proud of!"
"We currently sell Summer Harvest Rapeseed Oil as it is our local producer and their product is simply outstanding. From a choice of 5 tasty dressings to mayonnaise and the recent introduction of Oak Smoked and Truffle Infused Oils there is something for everyone. The Summer Harvest team are also great at supporting and promoting their product to our customers by attending tasting and ‘meet the producer’ events."
"We are enormous fans of Scottish rapeseed oil and stock the two which are most local to us. The Manns who run Supernature farm on the same estate as us so we are really keen to support them. And when a product is so great and so popular with customers it's an easy decision to keep the shelves stocked with it! We also use rapeseed oil in our cafe, partly because it's more local than other alternatives but also because it has such a great nutty flavour."
“Scotland Food & Drink has been really pleased to support the creation of this dedicated group, website and social media campaign. The product itself is phenomenal so it is great to now have a real collective momentum behind promoting it to both the public and chefs.
“The farming of oilseed rape in Scotland is sustainable and environmentally sound, the oil, once crushed, is delicious and versatile for both amateur and professional cooks. The contribution of the rapeseed oil sector is significant in terms of our over-arching mission to grow sales of the Scottish food and drink both at home and overseas and to cement Scotland’s reputation as a Land of Food and Drink.
“One of the most exciting elements to this venture is the fact this is a strong collaboration between competitive businesses. It is that collaborative culture which is now at the heart of the industry, with different sectors and businesses working together to develop their collective reputation and to open up new commercial opportunities. The reality is that Scotland’s food and drink story will make huge strides forward again over the next few years if businesses can follow the model of our rapeseed oil producers and work together for mutual gain."
Scotland Food & Drink is the leadership organisation working to grow the value of the industry to £30 billion by 2030 and build Scotland's reputation as a Land of Food and Drink.
"Oilseed rape crops are very important to beekeepers because they give us large areas of pollen and nectar early in the spring which helps the bees to build up the colony after winter.
"We have bees on many farms all over the East Coast of Scotland and are very grateful to them for hosting us. The relationship is beneficial to both parties as we need the nectar and pollen and the farmer can see increased yields by up to 25 per cent with the help of bees.
"We have many hives in the corner of oilseed rape fields and the farmers who host our bees want to work with us and often will sow pollen rich margins to help the bees through June when there is very little naturally available pollen and nectar.”
"I love rapeseed oil for its versatility and its gentle yet dynamic flavour. It's wonderful in dressings, on its own or used in the cooking of meats and seafood. It boasts great nutritional values and for such a premium quality Scottish product, it’s very sensibly priced across the range."
Tom Aikens is undisputedly one of the most exciting chefs in the UK and has created a number of fabulous recipes incorporating Cold-Pressed Rapeseed Oil. He uses it in his restaurant kitchens as well as at home. He has been cooking up a storm to prepare simple dishes that are fit for adults and kids alike. Since the re–launch of his restaurant, he has been keen to continue focusing on exciting home grown produce both within his menu and in the kitchen.
At Interface Food & Drink, we have been delighted with the approach to innovation and collaborative working taken by this group. Instead of feeling threatened by working closely with competitors, they have been both forward and outward looking - ensuring a bright future for this fledgling industry.