CHEAL'S OF HENLEY - OUR STORY
Henley in Arden is one of the oldest market towns in England’s ‘Shakespeare’s County’ – Warwickshire.
Henley benefits from its own rail station, and is serviced extremely well by public transport and taxi’s, with the M40 and M42 just a couple of miles away. Cheal’s is within easy commuting distance of Birmingham, with the National Exhibition Centre, (NEC) just 12 miles away. Stratford upon Avon, Redditch, Warwick, Royal Leamington Spa and Kenilworth are all within a short drive from Henley – even Coventry is less than 20 miles distance.
Located on the Northern end of the famous “Henley Mile” High Street which has many independent shops and public houses, Cheal’s sits amongst many historic buildings, some of which date back to medieval times.
Matt's parents, Tony and Julie Cheal, said: "Our dream was for Matt to open and run a great fine dining restaurant in Warwickshire, so when the property in High Street, Henley became available we quickly realised that this was the perfect venue to create Cheal’s of Henley”. Following a complete refurbishment, the beautiful old beamed building we now know as Cheal's was opened in October 2015. It is now an elegant dining space with 30 covers in the main restaurant and 12 covers in its separate private dining area.
Tony says: "we have all supported each other, it is very much a family affair. Matt and his team are delivering on our dream, with the restaurant receiving incredible plaudits from diners since day one of opening".
~ 2018 Best Fine Dining Restaurant Award ~
~ 2017 Judges Choice, Midlands Food and Drink Hospitality Awards ~
~ No 1 restaurant in Warwickshire on Trip Advisor out of 1,000+ restaurants ~
Matt Cheal opened Cheal’s of Henley during 2015 immediately following leaving his previous role as Head Chef of one of Birmingham’s best-known Michelin starred restaurants, and by doing so Matt realised his long-held ambition to be in a position to fully develop his own style of “Modern British” cuisine, delivered in a fine dining environment – but with a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.
Matt uses seasonal ingredients and local produce as much as possible. “I’m a clean and tidy chef, and quite precise. I take inspiration from my time at Lettonie with Martin Blunos.”
“Our family eat out a lot and I encourage the team to do the same. We’ve eaten at many superb restaurants including Hibiscus in London, Quique Dacosta in Dénia in Spain, at Hélène Darroze at the Connaught, and Pied à Terre last week,” – from doing so we can learn from others and develop our own styles using experiences gained of some of the very best Chef’s, but always in the unique Cheal’s way.
Matt together with his parents, Julie and Tony have sourced exquisite tableware from all over the World often on the family's travels. Matt’s brother, James, actually refurbished the restaurant, and his Mum, Julie, designed and dressed all of the interiors.
A recent addition to the restaurant has been a local allotment where many of the ingredients are picked and served on the same day.
JULIE & TONY
CHEALS OF HENLY