Replacement for Aitkin at Limewood ?

Chef Hermes has been watching the story unfold at Limewood Hotel in the New Forest with some interest.

Limewood opened to a blaze of publicity, Robin Hutson (one of the founders of the Hotel du Vin), local Michelin starred chef Alex Aitkin  & finally Justin Pinchbeck (former GM from the Zetter Hotel) were all on board to ensure a ‘Dream team’ to make, what is clearly a massive gamble & investment work.

But only a few months in and the ‘Dream team’ was starting to show some cracks, Aitkin sold his share to other investors (rumoured to be Pinchbeck & some of his former Zetter collegues who had joined him in Hampshire) but retained his roll as Executive Chef.

Late last month the news started to leak out that Aitkin had left Limewood all together and the fine dining restaurant had been renamed ‘The Dining Room by Luke Holder’. Needless to say the Limewood PR machine went into damage limitation mode. Despite Holders previous job being in an average 2 rosette 4 star Hotel, they were keen to point out that he’d worked in a 3 Michelin star in Italy, Hmmm hate to be the one to break it to them but it was only a stage.

We can reveal that the management at Limewood are now searching to secure the services of a ‘Name’, with Mark Hix spending 2 nights at the hotel as a guest of the management this weekend with a view to taking over one if not both of the dining options. Will he be adding Limewood to the collection of four restaurants he already has? It’s looking decidedly likely.

To para-pharase Mr Hutson,

you never know what might happen in the future !!!!!!

One Response to “Replacement for Aitkin at Limewood ?”
  1. Forestchef says:


    Sold his shares to the entrepeneur owner of Lime Wood Jim Ratcliffe. Gossip is Aitken plans to stay in the forest with his food and reputation.

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