4 years ago when Dawn and I were working in Dubai and she was expecting Stanley we decided it was time to settle down and shed the expat lifestyle. After working as a chef for over a period of 20 years overseas, gaining experience and knowledge in a range of eclectic cuisines in world class hotels and restaurants with the latter years spent leading kitchen brigades, I felt it was time to ”go it alone”.
Having both travelled to India on numerous occasions, with a shared passion for it’s food and culture as well as an inspirational stint with Vivek Singh at ‘The Cinnamon Club’ and a big Indian influence in the kitchens in Dubai, the decision for our future restaurant to be Indian felt very natural and so The Chilli Pickle was born.
The last time I worked in Brighton 25 years ago was as a silver service banquet waiter at the Metropole Hotel whilst studying a catering course at Brighton Tech (now City College) and returning home to open The Chilli Pickle was an easy desicion. Dawn has always loved Brighton from regular visits whilst living in London and I’ve always had a soft spot for Brighton and the fact we were doing something quite different we knew it was the perfect place to start.
After searching for the right property for nearly a year we found the perfect spot in the cobbled lanes amongst the jewellery and antique shops in Meeting House Lane. The space was perfect; 50 covers, a functional but small kitchen space and a real bistro feel to it.
With an initial slow start The Chilli Pickle gradually grew through word of mouth and the support of our now regular clientele. As we got busier and gained feedback from diners we knew we were on the right track and so our confidence grew and our style became more clearly defined.
After two and a half years at Meeting House Lane an opportunity came our way that we felt we could not refuse… a move to the restaurant space at myhotel.
We were honoured by the fact that Andy Thrasyvoulou the founder and CEO of myhotels believed in us as a small independent and that we had the right tools to make the large space succeed. They have been extremely supportive in the transition and Ben the GM and his team have really helped us feel at home.
We know this is a big step for us, but we believe we have something special in The Chilli Pickle and we have the passion and drive to conitinue to make this work with the constant support of our original core team as well as some new additions and are excited about whatever the future may bring.