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Howth Castle Cookery School

Meet our Chefs

Meet our Co-head tutors Sarah Hughes & John Carty, experienced chefs and natural teachers who create a relaxed and professional environment for learning here at Howth Castle Cookery School.

Howth Castle Cookery School's talented and creative team of Chefs; 

Pierre Heyraud

Ian Devine 

Daniel Finucane

Denise Cavanagh 

Adam Collins



Sarah Hughes

Sarah spent her early cooking years working in an organic restaurant in Co. Wicklow and as a private chef for well-known personalities and a number of embassies.  Another four years at a private house and venue in Dublin allowed her to gain extensive bespoke catering experience. Sarah went on to cook at other city centre venues & rustic eateries, rounding out her experience of both top-end cooking and the more informal approach to food.

Sarah has huge food-curiosity and a great eye for detail. She has read and travelled extensively over the years and has a great knack for absorbing and understanding food culture and identity.  Her capacity to devour cookery books cover-to-cover, remembering every detail, is a constant source of amazement to her colleagues. 
Her desert island cookery writers are Nigel Slater and Diane Henry (she really couldn’t choose) and her favourite class to teach is our Catch and Cook course.  

With us for 10 years, Sarah is renowned for her professional, yet relaxed, teaching approach and an ability to bring fun to every class. Having grown up by the sea, her inherent love of seafood and natural affinity for teaching, makes her a strong part of our team here in Howth Castle.

John Carty

John worked in many well known Dublin restaurants as Head Chef before taking on the role for La Stampa of Dawson Street. He was subsequently offered the role of Executive Chef with the Fitzwilliam Group, co-ordinating and catering for 5 different functions rooms and up to 750 guests on busy nights.

He went on to set up a catering company partnership cooking for political, celebrity and well-known Irish and International clients in the music, film and corporate worlds. This experience led to an invitation to be the sole caterer for a magnificently restored Georgian venue on Dublin’s Ormond Quay, where his experience of fine-dining for both intimate and larger events was put to fabulous use.

John has a love of cooking since childhood and has always enjoyed serving heartfelt creations with his own flair. His extensive years of professional catering show in his focus and attention to detail.

He also has a great interest in decorative arts and design including antiques and 20th century collectables. He is a natural, patient teacher and a very talented cook whose knowledge of all culinary aspects is very appreciated here at Howth Castle Cookery School. His desert Island chefs would be Rick Stein, Ottolenghi, Bobby Flay and Donna Hay and truly loves to bake.