The MasterChef Judges

Nick Munier

Nick Munier

Nick Munier was born in Kent. Growing up he helped his parents in their guesthouse which, from an early age, gave him a good grasp on the service industry. After leaving school at sixteen, Nick went onto catering school. On completing his course, and after a stint in Germany, he returned to the UK, and secured a job as a commis waiter in Le Gavroche, amongst other Roux establishments, with the Roux brothers in London.

At just eighteen, Nick was working in one of the most famous restaurants in the UK. He stayed with the Roux brothers for two years, learning and honing his craft. In 1991 he joined the K Club Michelin starred restaurant, as manager. He spent a year there before becoming assistant restaurant manager in Marco Pierre White’s 2-Michelin star restaurant The Hyde Park in London.

Nick spent almost a decade working with Marco on and off, with time spent managing many of his restaurants, including The Hyde Park, The Oak Room, The Criterion Brasserie, and The Belvedere, Holland Park. Nick also worked with Chef Conrad Gallagher at Peacock Alley.

In 2002 Nick moved back to Ireland to work as manager in Restaurant Patrick Guilbaud. A year later, Nick was appointed Food and Beverage Manager for The Clarence Hotel where he stayed until 2006. Nick spent 2006 and 2007 working in a consultancy capacity for the start up of many new projects in
Ireland, including The Village at Lyons for Tony Ryan, Bon Appetit in Malahide, Ivans in Howth, The Exchange Restaurant at the Westgrove Hotel in Clane, and One Pery Square in Limerick.

In 2007 Marco Pierre White invited Nick to become a maitre d’ on his then new TV show Hell’s Kitchen. Nick agreed, assuming he would barely feature on camera. However once the series aired with an audience of six million Nick became very recognisable. When Hell’s Kitchen finished, Nick returned to Dublin and took a job at l‘Ecrivain, although he left after a short period.

Nick had been toying with the idea of opening a restaurant for a couple of years, and in July 2009 that dream finally became a realisation when Nick, along with his business partner Stephen Gibson opened their restaurant Pichet on Trinity St.
Within six weeks they were breaking even. Within six months of opening Pichet was awarded a Bib Gourmand by the esteemed Michelin Guide. It continues to do very well and has secured a loyal clientele.

Nick’s second great passion is abstract art and he has been painting in this form for the last ten years. He has held solo and group exhibitions in Ireland and group exhibitions in England. Speaking about the upcoming series Nick said:
“I’m over the moon that we are coming back for a third series of MasterChef and putting our celebrities through their paces in the heat that is MasterChef.

“I'm hoping to see passion, skill, common sense and a good fun humoured chef with no complicated dishes. We have a group of celebrities that we think have what it takes to come out of their comfort zone and rise to the challenge to take the title of Celebrity MasterChef Ireland.

Dylan McGrath

Dylan McGrath

Dublin born Dylan McGrath, was raised on the Falls Road in Belfast. Surprisingly enough in his younger years Dylan had no interest in food. It wasn’t until in his twenties that Dylan really made the connection with cooking. He briefly studied in Portrush Catering College and the Belfast Institute, but wasn’t inspired by either course.

Dylan went on to work as Head Chef in in Jury’s Inn, Belfast, At the age of eighteen he was responsible for ten to twelve chefs in the new city centre hotel. He later left Jury's to work in Roscoff, Northern Ireland’s only Michelin starred restaurant.

After a year at Roscoff, Dylan moved to the UK to work at John Burton Race's two-star Michelin restaurant in Reading, L'Octolan. It was there that Dylan spent three years gaining the discipline, and honing the precision and skill essential for cooking at that level.

In July 2002, Dylan returned to Dublin to work with an old friend, Aidan Byrne, at the Michelin-star, Commons Restaurant, where he stayed until the following March. He then returned to London, where he worked with Tom Aikens, in his new restaurant in Chelsea where he became Head Chef.

Working with Tom Aikens was tough, but Tom recognised Dylan's ability and drive, and pushed him to his limit. Tom had a huge influence on Dylan and his career.

Dylan returned home to Ireland take up his own Head Chef position in Mint restaurant where he received a Michelin star. While in Mint Dylan was the subject of a fly on the wall documentary, Pressure Cooker.

In 2009 due to the economic downturn Mint was forced to close.

In August 2010, Dylan opened Rustic Stone. Dylan and his team worked to create an original concept that maintained his own distinctive innovative style and creativity, but at an affordable price. Rustic Stone is casual dining in a contemporary setting in which the food delivers on the flavours Dylan is so passionate about but without the formality he previously would have been associated with.

Dylan’s latest venture is Fade Street Social by Dylan McGrath which is one of the most ambitious restaurant projects to happen in Dublin for a very long time. The new venture opened its doors in October 2012 and consists of two different restaurants with separate menus and kitchens in an 8,000 square foot building in the heart of Dublin city.

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