ONE OF THE UK’S MOST CELEBRATED CHEFS, RAYMOND BLANC’S MANY SUCCESSES HAVE CULMINATED IN THE DREAMLIKE BELMOND LE MANOIR AUX QUAT’SAISONS.
Created by celebrated chef Raymond Blanc OBE, Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons is renowned for offering one of Britain’s finest gastronomic experiences.
Situated in the picturesque Oxfordshire village of Great Milton, it is also one of the country’s most intimate and original hotels, with 32 individually designed guest rooms and suites.
The hotel received two Michelin stars in 1984, the first year of its opening, and, remarkably, has held them ever since.
Surrounded by lawns, flower borders and orchards, the luxury hotel enjoys an idyllic, typically English setting. But beyond the eye-catching displays are vegetable and herb gardens that provide the kitchen—and the acclaimed Raymond Blanc Cookery School—with ultra-fresh, organic produce, ensuring the Michelin-star restaurant remains at the cutting edge of culinary excellence.
Raymond Blanc was born in a tiny rural village near Besançon, eastern France. His two greatest inspirations were the terroir of the Franche-Comté region and his mother, the formidable Maman Blanc. She lovingly created family meals bursting with fresh, local and seasonal flavors. He began his career as a waiter in Oxfordshire. One day, Raymond took over the kitchen when the chef was unwell. The rest, as they say, is history. He and his wife Jenny opened their first restaurant, Les Quat’Saisons, in Oxford in 1977. An overnight success, it won Egon Ronay Restaurant of the Year.
The restaurant swiftly earned two Michelin stars, which it has held for a staggering 29 years. Stunning gardens are the envy of botanists worldwide. The Raymond Blanc Cookery School, opened in 1991, attracts a constant stream of budding chefs.
Raymond is known globally for his passion for seasonal, organic produce. When sourcing food for his restaurant, he makes sure to know everything about its provenance. Rarely can a chef tell you exactly where the milk in your breakfast came from.
With his dedicated gardeners, he has cultivated herb beds in which 70 traditional and exotic varieties thrive. A two-acre vegetable garden produces over 90 types of vegetable. A mushroom garden sprouts around 20 edible species, and an orchard brings in beautiful apples, pears and quinces.
He champions an ethical approach to cooking and is devoted to energy efficiency and recycling. Belmond Le Manoir is viewed by many in the hotel and restaurant industry as the model to aspire to.