Striving for Excellence
The new philosophy of The Salutation is to consistently serve the finest food in a unique atmosphere for all occasions, creating a memorable experience that can be repeated and that is not all rhetoric that you have to taste and we have got to achieve.
Tom started his cooking journey during a school work experience at Gidleigh Park, Chagford under the guidance of Michael Caines. Michael, himself started his professional career at The Imperial Hotel in Exeter run by Tom’s forefathers. His great grandfather ran Deller’s of Exeter for 17 years between the First and Second World War. It was an amazing cafe renowned for its quality and architecturally a leading Art Nouveau building.
Tom attended Exeter College as a chef trainee for three years graduating as Top Student, then on to Gordon Ramsey at Hospital Road, Chelsea then to Petrus under Marcus Waring before returning to Devon and working his way up to Sous Chef at Gidleigh for Michael, a spell in France followed for the Rothschilds during Gidleigh refurbishment and then on to the Abode in Exeter as Executive Chef for three years.
Introducing the team
Amelia was also born into the hospitality trade and has working in various establishments across Devon and New Zealand. Local faces will know Amelia from her time at The Turf Locks managing a Bar Team and helping to run a tight ship. Amelia has been fortunate to also work in New Zealand for a few seasons including working at boutique hotel Awaroa Lodge in the Abel Tasman. Amelia’s love of travel landed her as Cabin Crew at Exeter’s own airline FlyBe for the last two years. Now the time has come for another challenge. As Chef Tom’s partner, Amelia in fact lives on site and has been involved behind the scenes from the beginning of the journey.
I began my hospitality career under the guidance of the Hajiyianni family in Plymouth 8 years ago. I worked in their flagship hotel, The New Continental, becoming trained in restaurant service, bar and cellar management, and reception duties. This is where I found my love for front-of-house hospitality.
After two years I was offered a position as restaurant supervisor at Olga Polizzi’s beautiful Hotel Endsleigh, where I was taught by Alex Polizzi’s front of house team, and restaurant manager Stephane Joumard, formerly of the Savoy and now Service Instructor at Glion Institute of Higher Education, hospitality school, Switzerland. Six months on I was promoted to deputy restaurant manager, where I found my real passion of staff training and their future development.
My hospitality career began 12 years ago at the Daffodil Restaurant in Cheltenham. I was hired as a part time waiter/bartender during my undergraduate Law degree. I very quickly fell in love with the Restaurant trade and the exciting buzz of a busy weekend service. I progressed through the ranks and became Head Waiter aged 22. With my degree completed and a new found passion for travel and food, I left the UK to live and work In Melbourne, Australia. It was here that I first discovered a passion for fine wine and spirits. I managed a small Italian bistro in Central Melbourne and undertook seasonal work in Vineyards in the Mornington Peninsula and Margaret River. I travelled for a further 7 years, working in New Zealand, Japan and India. I returned to Devon 18 months ago and met Amelia and Tom and was instantly inspired by their passion and dedication to producing high quality, local, and innovative food. I have been able to specialise my role within the team at the Salutation Inn to focus on the beverage portfolio and the delivery of our Wine Flight experience. I have recently completed my level 3 Wine and Spirits Certificate and hope to convert this into Qualifying Diploma in Wine over the next 2 years.
As a proper French man, my favourite coffee was an espresso, but when I arrived in England I discovered many types of coffees: flat white, latte, cappuccino – many new flavours, and with amazing patterns on the top. Straight away I was interested by the “Latte Art”.
My first course was at the Devon Coffee in Exeter, with Steve. After that I improved my skill at the Exeter Phoenix Centre, with a great Barista, Ben Green.
But it was at the Salutation Inn that I really became a Barista. The Salutation gave me the opportunity to get a proper certificate in Barista and Latte Art skill, with Clifton Coffee, in Bristol.
I have learnt how to get the perfect extraction of a coffee, to get the perfect flavour, between acidity and bitterness. Release the sweetness, and get body.
For me, a coffee now, is not just a coffee. It is a taste, a visual and a creative experience that I enjoy sharing everyday with our customers.
Originally from Cambridgeshire, my career in food and customer service began at an early age, selling sausages and steak over the counter in Dad’s butcher shops in Oundle & Stamford. After gaining an honours degree in leisure management from Sheffield Hallam University I travelled round the world, working in restaurants and bars to fund my adventures…and found an industry that I fell in love with!
During the course of my career I have enjoyed working in many different aspects of the industry, from designing cocktail menus for central London bars…to serving huge burgers whilst dancing round the tables at Hard Rock Café London…from general management of restaurants within the Cambscuisine group…to consulting for small cafes and helping smaller businesses successfully develop.
Falling in love (again…this time with a person!) was what brought me to Devon… my wife Leah was born and raised in Devon and moving to Topsham was an easy decision, such a beautiful town and a wonderful change of pace after 15 years living in “the big smoke”. The Salutation happened to be looking for a manager for the Glasshouse and it was a perfect fit for me, and a great opportunity to help grow a business from the early days.
With Tom’s incredible food, our lovely staff and the most beautiful building I have ever worked in, time has flown by and I’ve now been here for almost 3 years. I really enjoy seeing our local regular faces for coffee and lunch, and to help create a wonderful guest experience, whether it’s chatting to someone over their morning coffee or serving beautiful lunches and afternoon teas…well, that’s what it’s all about!
The Salutation Inn is owned by the South Western Hotel & Catering Company Ltd and was purchased on New Year’s Eve 2010 from Punch Taverns.
The property had been empty for two years and was in need of care. The Grade 2 * listed building was granted planning permission in late 2011 when the rebuilding project commenced, creating a 45 cover glazed atrium cafe, a 30 cover Restaurant and a Function Room suitable for conference and Banqueting up to 35 covers. Also four lovingly restored en-suite guest bedroom accommodation and two additional suites.
There is car parking at the rear of the building for our guests.
An atmospheric building that has a history and a future in the art of hospitality.
Breakfasts, cream teas & more
During the day the GlassHouse will be serving breakfast, mid-morning teas and coffees with the most scrumptious home-made cakes from our own French patisserie Sylvain Peltier. Lunch shall be fantastic food cooked to perfection, serving wholesome and light meals. During the afternoons a selection of full cream teas shall become available.
The Assembly Room is truly unique
The Salutation is the perfect venue to entertain clients for private dining with menus and wine to match, also for birthdays, anniversaries, engagements and Christmas. An ideal venue for training or presentations for corporate events, we are able to offer bespoke packages for you and your clients. The specially designed Atrium can accommodate a car for promotional purposes and VIP events. Read more
An 18th Century coaching inn
The Salutation has been an Inn since at least 1720. The fine 3 story façade stands proudly in the centre of Topsham. The building is protected with a star listing. Read more