A chef who was employed to cook for billionaires on their superyachts around the world has returned to Wales to open a restaurant. Over the past nine years, Jamie Tully has cooked for various clients in vacation destinations such as Dubai, the Bahamas and Florida.

But after quitting his job and returning to Wales for a short break, a holiday in his hometown unexpectedly saw him take the reins as head chef at the restaurant where he worked as a pan washer at the 14 years old. The restaurant, which is called Teuluwhich means ‘family’ in Welsh, is located on the site of Caer Beris Manor in the market town and will open on Friday 1 July.

According to Jamie, the vision behind the restaurant was inspired by his travels over the past nine years and specifically a menu influenced by Middle Eastern flavors. Jamie moved in 2014 and began his culinary career in sky chalets in Austria and France before working in summer villas in Malta.

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Soon after, the young chef decided to get yacht training and was eventually hired to work on charter yachts where he would serve billionaires and visit the most beautiful places in the world. “When you were cooking for billionaires, there was an expectation and it was high,” Jamie said.

“There was an absurd amount of money being spent on ingredients and dining at the best places in the world. Money was never an object. Customers expected the best and the pressure was there.

“I remember my first boss was a multi-millionaire and he just asked for a carbonara one day which was nothing special and probably cost around 50p and then we went and grated a thousand pounds of truffles on top.

“You would also see the absolutely obscene side of wealth. I remember my boss had a brand new Rolls-Royce dropped off right outside and he said, “Yeah, that’s fine” and drove off. It was definitely a humbling experience for me.



One of the many dishes Powys chef Jamie Tully has mastered on his travels



Jamie hopes to offer his diners an experience like no other at the new restaurant he is opening in Builth Wells
Jamie hopes to offer his diners an experience like no other at the new restaurant he is opening in Builth Wells

“I’ve done most of Europe, the Middle East – Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Oman – then more recently Florida, the Bahamas, then the Maldives. At one point I had been on yachts for a while and then decided I wanted to come back ashore.

“And that’s when I worked for Sheikh Mohammed and was his personal chef for two years. It was very difficult and very hard. The hours were long and the expectations were high. They offer you a great package and salary but you really work for it.

“In my travels a lot of people were unaware that Wales even had a kitchen. But it’s kind of cool looking back because that’s what I’m trying to influence with my menu now – the influence from the Middle East with Welsh products.”

Although Jamie admits living and working on yachts was exciting, he said his main focus now is on Teulu Restaurant and all that his beloved hometown has to offer in the culinary scene. He said: “I was never sure I was going to go home, but fate played its cards in that I quit my job and came home for a break. I have a coffee business next door and came to Caer Beris Manor to try and sell coffee. The owners told me they knew who I was and what I did and offered me the job.



Jamie has traveled to various destinations all over the world
Jamie has traveled to various destinations all over the world

“I thought about it for a while and then told them my vision for the restaurant. I hope to do everything with this restaurant – we hope to get a Michelin star, all the awards, and with those accolades put my hometown on the map and promoting everything I learned growing up. It’s crazy how much I took for granted growing up here. And when I got home I realized how good it was .

The Powys chef hopes the restaurant will make diners “feel at home”, but also aims to provide an experience like no other. He added: “The menus inspired by my travels created by Welsh produce are so important to me. The restaurant and the food are basically an extension of me.

“I don’t want to do what other people are doing, I want to stand out and I want people to come here and be like, ‘Okay, if I want this food, I have to come here.’ that you can’t find anywhere else. For example, because it’s a Grade II listed building, we couldn’t knock down any walls. But I wanted to create a chef’s table experience for our diners As a result, we decided to have cameras in the kitchen so our diners can see what’s going on and everything is open.



After traveling the world, Jamie Tully is now the head chef at a new restaurant called Teulu in Builth Wells, Powys
After traveling the world, Jamie Tully is now the head chef at a new restaurant called Teulu in Builth Wells, Powys

“And we also have edible menus that can be eaten at the end of their meal. It’s about creating an experience for diners and we wanted to offer something completely different.

“I’ve experienced so many different flavors and cuisines in some of the best restaurants in the world and brought it all home. It’s important to stand out, especially with everything going on in the world and the prices that If you’re just average, I think it’s very difficult to sustain a business.

“I feel privileged to open this restaurant in my hometown. Everyone has been following my journey on social media for so long – they saw all the yachts and all the destinations but no one tried my food.

“Once I broke the news about the restaurant on social media, I had an amazing response from all my friends and family. It’s a lot of pressure because I set the standard high enough for what we’re going to do, but I’m very excited.”

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