Jamaican chef spices up village pub

editorial image

A NEW Caribbean-influenced menu is spicing up the food offering in Billingshurst.

The Kings Head pub has a new head chef, and to celebrate are offering you the chance to win a meal for two with sparkling wine, as well as a fantastic discount offer for all readers to enjoy. See tomorrow’s County Times p.6 for details (Thursday April 14)

On Saturday, the pub celebrated the launch of its new café, bar, and restaurant – with invited guests, local businesses and regulars sampling some of the delights of Jamaican head chef Ronnie Rowe’s cooking.

“My food is my passion,” Ronnie told the County Times. “And it’s going down a storm. I don’t think you can get what I do anywhere else locally – they have to come and try my food,” added Ronnie with a chuckle.

The former head chef of the White Horse at Easebourne has been brought in by the Kings Head’s new general manager Gregg Nash.

“We have a brand which is Ronnie and the Kings Head bar café restaurant – so we are taking quite a corporate view from the branding perspective,” said Gregg – his words made reality by the red green and yellow balloons decorating the pub, the sound of a steel band resonating from the garden, and the distinctive smell of Jamaican jerk and old spice tickling the nostrils.

With three Indian restaurants a stone’s throw from the Kings Head in the Jengers Mead area, Gregg says ‘there is already a culture of dining with spicy food in the area – we are just looking to share a piece of the action’.

However, it is recognised as a ‘risky proposition’ in the current climate, but that ‘sometimes this is the best time to launch a new product’.

The Kings Head management were delighted with the response their event received on Saturday, as well as that of locals over the past few weeks informed of the pub’s new direction.

“All the feedback has been positive – absolutely positive across the board,” the County Times was told. Speaking at the launch event, chef Ronnie added: “We’re really just trying to do something different – find a niche in the market – and today has proven it will go down a storm.”