When did Daniel Clifford win Great British Menu and does the veteran judge have his own restaurant?

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Daniel Clifford is understandably one of the most respected judges in the Great British Menu, being a previous champion.

The Michelin-starred chef is a veteran of the series, and one of the UK’s most celebrated cooks. Small wonder that this week’s would be GBM winners are probably quaking in their boots.

Here’s everything you need to know about Daniel Clifford and his reputation on Great British Menu…

Daniel Clifford Daniel Clifford is a two-time Great British Menu winner (Credit: BBC)

When did Daniel Clifford win Great British Menu?

During his distinguished career, Daniel Clifford has made it to the Great British Menu banquet on no less than two occasions.

Clifford repeated his success in successive seasons of the show, winning in both 2012 and 2013.

READ MORE: Who are the Northern Ireland Great British Menu chefs?

First time around, his winning dish featured a slow-poached chicken, served with an artificial egg made out of sweetcorn, as well as an accompaniment of buttered spinach, bacon and peas.

Then in 2013, Clifford brought his pastry skills to the fore. His winning dessert was a bold combination of pineapple cheesecake, coconut sorbet, pineapple textures and piña colada.

It’s this distinguished record that has helped secure his spot as one of Great British Menu’s most esteemed veteran judges.

Daniel Clifford Great British Menu Daniel Clifford’s winning dish on the 2012 series of Great British Menu (Credit: BBC)

Does Daniel Clifford own his own restaurant?

Apart from competing on Great British Menu, Daniel Clifford has built his reputation off the back of his acclaimed Midsummer House restaurant.

Clifford took over the kitchen in 1998, having worked previously for chefs such as Marco Pierre White.

The restaurant draws on influences from chefs including Ferran Adria and Heston Blumenthal, incorporating elements of molecular gastronomy. In fact, Blumenthal’s influence is so prominent that Midsummer House is colloquially known as ‘The Fat Duckling’, after the chef’s famous Bray restaurant.

Although he is most famous for his fine dining, Clifford has also dabbled in the pub industry. The Headley opened in Essex in 2007, with Clifford acting as chef-patron.

However, despite Clifford’s best efforts, the venture went bust in 2011.

Midsummer House Cambridge Daniel Clifford’s Midsummer House restaurant in Cambridge (Credit: Alamy/Alistair Laming)

Does Daniel Clifford have any Michelin stars?

In 2005, Daniel Clifford’s Midsummer House received its second Michelin star – the only new restaurant that year to receive the accolade.

Since then, the restaurant has remained one of the leading fine-dining operations in the UK. According to the most recent Michelin Guide:

“Experienced chef-owner Daniel Clifford has run this restaurant for over 20 years and his experience shines through.

“Never one to rest on his laurels, his dishes continually evolve and, although they have a classic base, are packed full of personality and originality; this is a chef who’s not afraid to push the boundaries.

“Luxury ingredients are generously used, flavours are measured, there’s an appealing range of different textures and many of the dishes are finished off at the table.”

Dinner costs anywhere between £115 and £230. In addition, booking is strongly advised, if not essential.

Daniel Clifford Great British Menu Clifford is now a regular member of the Great British Menu judging panel (Credit: BBC)

Where did Daniel Clifford train?

Before taking the helm at Midsummer House, Clifford learned his trade in a number of top UK kitchens.

He took his first job as a commis chef at the Howfield Manor Hotel in Canterbury at the age of 16. From there, Clifford gained more experience at Marco Pierre White’s Box Tree.

READ MORE: Who is Great British Menu judge Tom Brown and how did he get to the banquet?

Clifford continued his training at a range of different restaurants, including in France. Eventually, he returned to the UK, becoming a senior sous-chef at a restaurant in Leeds before moving to Midsummer House.

Daniel Clifford Clifford has never been afraid to pull his punches on the show (Credit: BBC)

Is Daniel Clifford married?

Away from the kitchen, Daniel Clifford is happily married to his wife, Kerry.

The couple have five children, all of whom are daughters, as well as several dogs.

Clifford is also a keen carp fisherman and has professed a love of Full-English breakfasts on the weekend.

He extensively documented aspects of his personal life in the 2019 autobiographical cookbook, Out Of My Tree.