Chef Jobs Inverness
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Standing proud as the unofficial capital of the Scottish Highlands, the ancient cathedral city of Inverness is one of Europe’s fastest-growing cities. And for good reason.
For lovers of the great outdoors, few cities offer a better base for exploration, with majestic highlands and glimmering lochs beckoning visitors in almost every direction. History buffs can survey the splendour of Inverness Castle (the site where Macbeth murdered King Duncan in Shakespeare’s play), while culture vultures will be enthralled by the sights and sounds of Scottish Gaelic heritage.
There’s also the small (or rather large) matter of Loch Ness, which is located to the southwest of the city. This world-famous body of water is renowned for its mythical monster, Nessie. But what’s less known is that it holds more fresh water than all of the lakes in England and Wales combined.
In 2014, a survey described Inverness as the “happiest place in Scotland” and the second happiest in the UK. It’s little wonder that the population has grown by over 10,000 people in little under a decade. In fact, a quarter of all people living in the Highlands call Inverness home.
The UK’s most northerly city, Inverness has actually only had city status since 2000 when it was declared one of Britain’s ‘new millennium cities’. This newfound identity has kickstarted the local economy and helped a small but close-knit food and drink scene flourish. From whisky bars to modern Scottish gourmet restaurants, as well as a host of global cuisines, the vibrant catering and hospitality industry in Inverness is surprisingly varied.
For chefs of all levels looking to upskill, Inverness and the Highlands region is home to a number of training opportunities. The University of the Highlands and Islands (UHI), for example, offers a Professional Cookery HNC course. Alternatively, if you find work with a Blue Arrow employer, you may be able to join a Blue Arrow Apprenticeship programmes.
Thanks to its isolation, housing prices in Inverness are relatively cheap. An average 1-bedroom apartment in a suburb of the city costs around £500 per month to rent, while a 3-bedroom city centre apartment costs £933.33.
The Inverness urban area is easy to get around thanks to regular bus services, with a one-way ticket costing £2.25. For those looking to travel further afield, Inverness Bus Station provides regular coach services to numerous locations across Scotland, with operators including Stagecoach, National Express and Megabus.
By rail, Abellio ScotRail services run from Inverness railway station to Scottish destinations such as Perth, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Aberdeen, Thurso and Wick. The city is also connected to London Euston by the Caledonian Sleeper (which runs six times a week) and to London King’s Cross by the Highland Chieftain (which runs daily). Inverness Airport is 8 miles northeast of the city and has flights to London, Manchester, Belfast, the Scottish islands and various European destinations.
Supermarkets in Inverness sell food and drink at the same prices you’d expect anywhere else in the country. It’s also easy to eat out without forking out. A meal for one at an inexpensive restaurant costs around £15 while a three-course meal for two in a mid-range restaurant will set you back around £50.
Council tax in Inverness is administered by the Highland Council and is calculated based on the area you live in, as well as the value of the property. More information about council tax bands can be found here.
There’s plenty to get your teeth stuck into in Inverness. Set in a former church, The Mustard Seed Restaurant is a modern, split-level space right in the heart of the city, offering diners a carefully sourced European menu. Occupying a great spot on the River Ness waterfront, Rocpool serves up the best Scottish ingredients in the form of beautifully presented dishes. Meanwhile, Number 27 Bar & Kitchen offers great local food at reasonable prices, with picturesque views of the castle thrown in for good measure.
Fans of more informal eating can also rejoice. The Grumpy Chef is the best place for a colourful veggie breakfast, while Comfort Foods does exactly what it says on the tin. Aspendos is popular for its lively atmosphere and Turkish meze dishes, the Jamaican restaurant Kool Runnings provides a welcome slice of Caribbean sunshine amid the bleak Scottish winter, and Little Italy is a cracking family-run trattoria with fabulous food and friendly service.
Despite its remoteness, Inverness is also home to many of the restaurant chains that you’d typically see in a large town elsewhere in the country. Popular chains include Frankie & Benny’s, Zizzi, Pizza Express, and Bella Italia.
Of course, we couldn’t talk about Inverness without mentioning whisky. Due to its proximity to some of the best distilleries in the world, the water of life can be sampled on just about every street corner. For an authentic Scottish whisky-drinking experience, take your pick from The Malt Room, Scotch & Rye, MacGregor’s, and The Piano & Whisky Bar.
Catering and hospitality work is also available in the city’s primary and secondary schools, as well as in its hotels, hospitals and care homes. Music fans can find work in multi-purpose venues such as Ironworks, while football fans can pick up a Saturday job at the 7,500-capacity Caledonian Stadium, home of Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC. The university campus is also a major catering employer.
No matter if you’re a full-time sous chef or a part-time barista, Inverness is a great place to take the next step in your career. Besides, few places offer such a spectacular backdrop to a day at work.
Blue Arrow Inverness
5 Strothers Lane
Tel: 01463 240 590
Branch Opening Times
Monday - Friday: 9:00am - 5:30pm