First Group has announced the promotion of Samantha Stone to Group Development Chef. In her new role as Group Development Chef for the First Group, Chef Stone will manage all aspects of culinary and menu development, staff training, and maintaining standards across the brand.

Managing Director of First Group, Shaun Lamont, said: “Chef Stone’s generous portion of enthusiasm and professionalism pushed her to the top of the candidate list for the Group Development Chef position and we are pleased that she has accepted this appointment. We place great importance on the culinary experience when dining at a First Group property and her role will help us ensure that this experience is synonymous with our brand philosophy to deliver magical memories.”

“First Group’s aspiration to develop young talent has played a big part in turning my passion for food into a career. It has been an inspiring journey so far and I look forward to playing a role in the journey to developing innovative culinary creations that delight the senses,” commented Chef Stone.

Chef Stone is a graduate of 1000 Hills Chef School, where she achieved 3 international qualifications and Diplomas in Food Preparation and Cooking, Patisserie as well as an Advanced Diploma in Culinary Arts. She then moved on to a position as Executive Sous Chef at Sibaya Casino before lecturing in culinary arts, patisserie and cold kitchen and later joining the First Group team.

“Being able to mentor and coach trainee kitchen staff and then later award them with a South African Chef Association membership is an extremely rewarding way for me to not only share my passion for food, but to also contribute towards the growth and development of First Group and the F&B industry as a whole,” concluded Chef Stone.

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