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A Chat With Adam Nevin – Head Chef At The Morrison Room in Carton House

Originally from Maynooth in County Kildare, Adam has worked in hospitality from a young age, training at Ballymaloe Cookery School before working at The Shelbourne in Dublin. In 2017 Adam moved to the UK, working his way up from Commis Chef at Alyn Williams at The Westbury before joining Tom Kerridge’s team at the two Michelin starred Pub, The Hand and Flowers. Following this Adam Nevin moved to the famous Dorchester in London in 2019 to The Grill at The Dorchester first as Sous Chef, thereafter he was quickly promoted, finally to Head Chef in November 2022.

Having honed his skills London, The Morrison Room at Carton House, a Fairmont Managed Hotel in his native Maynooth welcomed Adam as Head Chef in September 2023, and under Nevin this opulent dining destination has since earned a spot in the Michelin Guide. We chatted with Adam his career to date, his journey to The Morrison Room and his vision for the restaurant going forward.

1. Why did you decide to become a chef? 

All my favourite memories involve food from a young age. That made me want to become a chef and share my passion for food with other people.

2. Tell us about your journey as a chef to date.

I started off as a kitchen porter when I was 15 in a local café called Twist and worked my way up to commis chef by the age of 16 where I continued working for three years. Then I moved on to The Shelbourne in Dublin where I met Garry Hughes and Andy Nolan and worked there for two years leaving as a Chef de Partie. I decided to make the biggest move of my career and moved to London to a one Michelin star restaurant called Alyn Williams at The Westbury as commis chef before working my way up to chef de partie.

After two years, I went to Tom Kerridge’s two-Michelin star pub in Marlow as a Chef de Partie for a year. Tom Booton, my previous Head Chef at Alyn Williams, got in touch with me and asked me if I was interested in doing a new opening with him at The Grill at the Dorchester as Sous Chef. It was an opportunity I could not turn down so I worked there for four years and I left as Head Chef. Now I am back home in Maynooth and working as Head Chef at The Morrison room, which I am absolutely thrilled about and it’s my first venture under my own name and I’m really enjoying it so far! 

3. Can you share the story of how you became Head Chef at The Morrison Room?

I was in London at the time and I was actually out of work with a bad back injury and one of my friends told me that they were looking for a new Head Chef there, so I came to do a trial and cooked four dishes. They offered me the job on the spot and I haven’t looked back since. 

4. What do you love most about The Morrison Room?

I really love the whole concept of old meets new as The Morrison Room is such a grand room and dates back to 1739.  The team and I are all young and we are really bringing our own personality to the food and the room and we want to make it a fun dining experience for everyone who comes to visit us at The Morrison Room.

5. What are your goals for The Morrison Room in 2024?

Our goals for 2024 at The Morrison Room are to keep improving all the time and to keep making the guests happy and hopefully good things will come our way.

6. Describe your typical work day.

We start our prep early in the morning, I check in with all the team and make sure they have everything they need for the day. I text our suppliers in the morning and organise the following day’s deliveries. I finalise the menu with the team and I make sure the restaurant is set and looking good. We then have a team briefing before service starts at 6pm.

7. Do you have a signature dish or technique?

If I was impressing friends, my signature dish would have to be a Massaman curry with fried rice and rotis. I absolutely love Thai food and eat in Thai restaurants regularly. Every time I eat out I always take inspiration for my own dishes.

8. Describe your food philosophy in one line. 

I want to create an amazing experience working with the best produce we can source, getting the team involved and making them proud of what they do.

9. Why do you love working in the Irish food industry?

I love to see the progress the Irish food industry has made and is continuing to make, it’s such an exciting time to be involved and I can’t wait to see it continue to grow over the coming years.

10. What’s one restaurant you will never get sick of visiting?

Chapter One, Mickael is an amazing chef.

11. Favourite Irish producer/ingredient?

I really like the Irish Wasabi we use from Kilkenny, it’s amazing. It’s the first time Ireland has started growing wasabi and The Morrison Room is the first restaurant to use this particular producer in Kilkenny. I think it took about eight years before it got to the edible stage so it’s a very unique ingredient to use but I just really like it.

12. Who has influenced your cooking the most?

A lot of it is self taught and I’ve taken bits I’ve learned from everywhere I’ve worked. I always try and learn something from other places when I eat out.

13. Irish chef you admire most?

It’s hard to name one, I have so much respect for all the Irish chefs at the top of their game – Darina Allen, Rory O’Connel, Rachel Allen and Neven Maguire come to mind.

14. Best piece of career advice you’ve received? 

To take everything professionally not personally and to be a sponge absorbing every piece of information you can.

15. Favourite travel destination for food?

I love Spain. Everything about the country makes me happy when I’m there – the people, the weather, the food and it’s a lot more affordable! 

16. What is the best food memory you have? 

Eating paella in Valencia. It is one of the best dishes I’ve ever had.

17. What’s the worst thing you’ve ever eaten?

My dad made me celery sticks and mayonnaise when I was a kid. That was pretty bad. 

18. What do you cook at home when you don’t feel like cooking?


19. Favourite cookbook?

The Square Cookbook. 

20. What’s one ingredient you cannot stand?

I’m not a big fan of offal. 

21. Which four people (living or dead) would you like to make dinner for?

Roy Keane, Gordon Ramsay, Michael McIntyre and Eminem. 

22. Go-to drink order?   

Guinness, obviously. 

23. Where’s your local? 

Brady’s of Maynooth.

24. Favourite cuisine to cook? 


25. Favourite cuisine to eat? 

Asian food. 

26. Favourite coffee spot? 

I don’t drink coffee but if I was having a drink in the morning, sometimes I’ll have a glass of milk from Killadoon, a local farm in Celbridge. We use their milk to make ice-cream in the restaurant, it’s delicious.

27. Hangover/takeaway order? 

McDonald’s everytime.

28. You are stuck on an island, you can pick one dish to eat forever without getting tired of it, what would you eat? 

Proper paella from Valencia 

29. Go-to breakfast? 

I’m not a huge breakfast fan but if I had to pick one, it would be a sausage sambo. Can’t go wrong with one of those. 

30. Sweet or savoury? 


For more information on The Morrison Room at Carton House and to make a reservation: The Morrison Room.

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