Ryan Venning, our General Manager and Head Chef is the driving force behind the The Rockpool vision. With two decades’ cheffing experience and originally from South Africa, three years ago he brought his wealth of knowledge and huge passion for food to The Rockpool Beach Cafe.

In South Africa, Ryan trained at The International Hotel School, a world renowned programme for budding chefs who are determined to make their passion for food a way of life. Ryan headed over to the UK in his early twenties, with Cornwall being his destination for two reasons; one, it being the number one foodie destination to all who love food as much as we do and two, the great surf!

In Cornwall, Ryan covered popular beaches in and around St Ives, with the fabulous Porthminster Beach Cafe being his destination for ten years. Ryan’s recipes have featured in many well known cook books including Great British Chefs, The Great Cornish Fish Book and recipes for The Macmillan Cancer Trust to name a few. Using his extensive experience, Ryan has enjoyed training new chefs at Cornwall Catering College and has supported the setup of other well known Cornish restaurants. He even ran an independent catering business for three years, covering weddings and all types of events.

At The Rockpool, Ryan has been the driving force behind updating not only our food but also our venue, bringing the whole customer experience forward into a laid back, beachside cafe with exceptional quality, unfussy yet delicious, flavourful, modern cuisine and style. The food has a fusion quality about it, while celebrating local, seasonal produce at its best.

The future of The Rockpool is an exciting one with Ryan in the lead, always striving to ensure customers are kept at their happiest. Focusing on the vital issues of buying from local, ethical, sustainable sources together with our wonderful local landscape provides inspiration for wonderful seasonal menus as well as an ever changing range of specials, that he particularly enjoys to create.

Outside of his working hours, you might catch Ryan catching a few waves at one of the many great surf spots in the local area, or taking his two boys for a dip in the sea!