I was born in Manchester and I worked at the Michelin Starred restaurant Fischer’s of Baslow Hall in Derbyshire in my teens, while studying at Sheffield College.
After winning the NZ/UK Link Foundation Young Chef of the Year in 2006 the opportunity to travel presented itself. I moved to New Zealand working in a number of acclaimed restaurants for several years.
When I first moved to Australia, I spent time in Daylesford and McLaren Vale, later settling in Queensland at top restaurants in Brisbane before relocating to the Sunshine Coast.
Have you always wanted to be a Chef?
I knew from a very early age that I wanted to be a Chef. I started as a dishy at 14 and never looked back. I love being able to encourage young talent now, I was lucky to have that when I started out.
How would you define your style?
I am classically trained with experience in both European and Antipodean cuisine. I enjoy creating clean, precise dishes with unique balance and refined elegance. I take inspiration from around the world and my menus are seasonally driven. I don't have one favourite thing to cook. I like to work with the freshest produce and my favourite ingredients to work with change with the seasons. It’s about being humble and honest, I like to let the produce drive my menu.
Obsessive compulsive about?
Spoons, have to have the right spoons! And folding tea towels!
What do you love about this business?
The comradery, the culture and the drive to succeed and deliver the best dining experience we can as a team. We are a small, close knit team; we are all striving towards the same goal. For me that’s about building relationships with suppliers and treating the ingredients with respect. We work closely with our suppliers, the people who make it possible for us to do what we do by providing the best local and sustainable ingredients.
An ingredient you can’t live without?
Miso, so versatile. We always have a collection in the fridge, from Chickpea to Aged Barley Miso.
Most ‘eyebrow raising’ menu item?
Smoked bone marrow and white chocolate truffle, one of our petit fours, certainly a talking point to end the meal.
Photo by Tara Lee Photography.
Signature restaurant of Montville’s picturesque Spicers Clovelly Estate, The Long Apron is a dining experience that insists on a lengthy stay. This intimate restaurant feels instantly inviting and once seated in the elegant yet comfortable dining room, with its black French provincial-style chairs and white tablecloths, or out on the terrace gazing over the Sunshine Coast Hinterland, you’ll find it hard to leave. Most alluring, is Chef Chris Hagan's seasonal European-inspired dishes, which blend classic technique and the finest local produce with elegant results. Delve into the likes of coal grilled octopus, ginger reduction, chickpea and pickled persimmon, followed by grass-fed roasted lamb rump, braised leek, black garlic and bay leaf cream, best enjoyed with perfectly matched wines.