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Tom Flavin

Tom Flavin

Passionate Chef-Educator | Limerick

Tom Flavin has been Executive Chef at the Strand Hotel Limerick since 2007, but he has essentially been a chef almost his entire life.

Tom grew up on a farm in West county Limerick and helped on the farm from a young age. Milking cows, slaughtering animals, making fresh black pudding were normal occurrences. He had his first business up and running age 8, milking his own goats and selling the milk to neighbours. This background gives Tom a deep appreciation for what goes in to producing good food. He remembers having a huge interest in food from the age of 5 or 6 when he could be found in the kitchen “often mixing ludicrous things together” and “always knew I wanted to be a chef”.

After studying hospitality in Limerick, at the age of 18 he joined a cousin in the Philippines and worked in the kitchen of a 5-star hotel. After a total of two and half years in Manila, eight years in London where he reached the position of youngest ever Sous Chef at the Dorchester, and periods working in Singapore and Australia, he returned to Ireland in 1999.

Since then he has committed himself wholeheartedly to buying from local food producers, winning many awards for the Limerick Strand hotel that acknowledge both his culinary skill and his commitment to quality sourcing. He sees local sourcing as something that contributes not only to the food offering of a hotel, but to the local economy and comes back to the hotel in business and local loyalty. He regularly brings his chef team to meet with local farmers and food producers, does cookery demonstrations in schools, and gardens with his own children. He is passionate about sharing food skills with future generations and believes in passing on “the joys of food in everyday life”. 

Tom is a member of the Limerick Food Strategy group which is developing a Limerick Food Festival and coordinating a number of smaller food events.