About RTÉ Television
The Restaurant
The Restaurant RTÉ One, Sunday, 8.30pm

Meet the Staff

Lee Bradshaw, Waiter

Lee grew up in restaurants. His mother Linda Hickey was the proprietor of 'Spinnaker's Restaurant' in the Port View Hotel in Dun Laoghaire. Lee's fascination with food developed early when each Saturday he would watch his mother cook and learn from her. Earliest dishes Lee cooked were Chili Con Carne and Gingerbread men. Lee's interest in cooking led to a part-time job in the kitchen while he was still a teenager, looking after the starters and prepping the vegetables. However spotting more lucrative employment outside the kitchen, Lee took over as front of house manager in Spinnakers for a couple of years.

A lifelong interest in Music and a spell in a group 'Men2B' earned young Lee a record contract with President Records in London. When he was just 17 'Men2B' travelled the continent promoting their single 'Love Satisfaction' with Hazel Deane. At this time Lee also became interested in acting and appeared in 'Rocking Hood, the Panto' at the Gaiety and many TV commercials for companies such as O2, Coca Cola, Abrakebabra and Boyle Sports. Ever the Renaissance man, Lee moved into modelling, working for John Rocha, Louis Copeland and taking part in the BT Supermodel fashion show.

In 2004 Lee opened his first restaurant 'SHX' on Dorset Street, follows by 'Restaurant Twenty' in the Killarney Golf and Fishing Club. Lee opened his third restaurant in a country House Hotel in Blennerville, Tralee called 'The Station House Bar and Grill' and 'Restaurant Twentyone'.

Lynda O'Sullivan, Waitress

Lynda joined The Restaurant for the first time this year. She is very familiar with the show and the team as she herself works at Wineport Lodge, home of The Restaurant. Lynda is originally from Durrow, Co Laoise and started working at a local restaurant there called The Woodview, when she was just 16. She spent two years there before moving to a job in the luxurious nearby 'Castle Durrow'.

It was then that Lynda decided that a career in the catering industry was for her and she started a 2-year course in Hospitality Skills with Failte Ireland. After graduation, she then started her Bachelor of Business and Hospitality Business Management in Athlone Institute of Technology.

Lynda started working at Wineport Lodge 2 years ago as part of her work experience and she continues to enjoy working there with the great team.

Vivian Reynolds, Waiter

Vivian's first job at age 16 was in Luttrelstown Castle Golf Club, where he developed his interest in the food and wine industry. A native of Athlone - He recently graduated with a degree in hotel & catering management from Athlone Institute of Technology age 22. He did his job placement in Fitzpatrick's Hotel in New York, and has also worked in Cellar Restaurant in the Merrion Hotel. For the past two and a half years Vivian has been working in the Wineport Lodge, under Ray Byrne and Jane English. He is currently studying the Certificate in Wine course with the Wine Development Board of Ireland. Vivian made his TV debut when he steeped in at short notice as waiter on last years series of the Restaurant. He proved to be such a hit he was invited back again for part of the series this year.

Elaine Normile, Waitress

Since she was a schoolgirl, Elaine seemed destined to work in the hospitality industry. While still a teenager she worked in The Clonmel Arms Hotel in her hometown in Tipperary. It was this experience, coupled with the influence of an older brother, who also worked in the industry that led Elaine to take a year out working as a waitress in a gourmet pub in Kinsale before going on to study Hotel Management.

Elaine has gained much experience in her field through travel. She spent one year in the 5-star 'Meridian' in Frankfurt, followed by 2 years working in the luxury beach-front 'Shutters on the Beach Hotel' in Los Angeles. Jobs in a variety of restaurants in Sydney brought her home again to Ireland where she took up a position as Assistant Manager in 'Diep le Shaker'. Some years later she moved to the hugely popular wine bar and restaurant 'Peploes'. When the travel bug bit again, Elaine moved to London where she was General Manager of the 110-seater Thai 'Busaba Eathai', in Soho. It was an offer to launch and manage the new Thai restaurant in Dublin 2, 'Saba' that brought her back.

Elaine is a committed wine buff and she has completed many courses through the WSET and appears on City Channel as a wine consultant.

Lee Bradshaw
Lynda O'Sullivan
Vivian Reynolds
Elaine Normile