Meet the tutors

ELLA NORMAN

“Who needs an occasion for good food? Any day can be perfect for a feast!”

Likes Skiing | Performing arts | Sailing | Cooking
Dislikes Beetroot | Rain | UHT milk

Having been a frequent flyer for much of her life, moving around the world with her family, she’s now settled in the mountains with her dream mountain dog Bluebell, living and working full time.

She’s worked for Skiworld during winter seasons since 2001, originally as a Chalet Host, then a Chalet Chef and Chalet Manager before taking more of an executive role, deigning the menus for all the Skiworld chalets and lodges and overseeing the Mountain Cookery School each summer. Ella’s background was as a chef for an events catering company. Ella has worked for the Mountain Cookery School since 2016 and loves every minute of summers in Tignes.

Ella has spent a lot of time cooking for other people and enjoys feeding big groups of people. No-one goes hungry when Ella’s around!


RHYS DAVIES

“The greatest dishes are very simple.” – Auguste Escoffier

Likes Craft beer | Growing vegetables | Podcasts
Dislikes Grapefruit | Intolerance

Rhys has been cooking for as long as he can remember – according to his Mum, his first foray into food was making his own banana sandwich at age 2! After growing up in Manchester’s leafy suburbs Rhys went on to study philosophy at Durham University. Since leaving university, most of his working life has been spent in accountancy and consultancy, which offered him an amazing opportunity to work all over the world and further expand his culinary knowledge by sampling (amongst many other things!) street snacks in Rome, traditional Korean cuisine and shrimp and grits in Tennessee. Precariously balanced around his day job, Rhys also worked evenings and weekends as a private caterer over the last three years and loves developing and delivering menus for a crowd.

This love of food led Rhys to spend a winter hosting a ski chalet, where every morning he’d wake up only half-believing he actually lived somewhere so stunning! Most recently, in winter 2018/19 Rhys worked as a Head Chef at a 60 guest chalet in La Plagne.

At home, Rhys tries to cook at least two new dishes each week from scratch… as well as honing the recipes for some old ones. In the future, he’d love to work in the kitchen of his own restaurant!
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AMANDA TONKS

“Food. The solution to all of life’s problems”

Likes Perfect bluebird days | Scuba diving | Anything that contains chocolate
Dislikes Mosquitos | Anything pickled | Getting lost

Having lived in a variety of “exotic” places from her home in North East England, to the shores of Lake Windermere, and even the tropics of a Malaysian rainforest, it’s no wonder Amanda feels right at home here in the mountains. She gained her love of cooking when she was a young girl, baking sweet treats for her family. She later progressed to cooking tasty meals for herself and her friends during university, picking up her love for spicy food and unusual cuisine during a year-long student exchange program in South East Asia. There she tried everything from fried crickets to delicious durian fruit and mangosteens. Amanda loves to try new flavours and engage in different cultures.

In her free time she likes to be outdoors, exploring the fells of the Lake District where she experienced her first taste of chef life. She worked alongside a small team in a very busy kitchen which catered for hundreds of hungry holiday makers each day, gaining inspiration and valuable industry knowledge. Leaving those rainy shores behind, Amanda took a winter chalet hosting job with Skiworld in a quaint French ski resort. She took to this role like a duck to water, providing exceptional customer service, baking tasty cakes, and developing an insight to what it takes to successfully host an amazing chalet, and is keen to share this information and inspire others. She has recently completed the 2018/19 ski season as a Resort Manager and hopes to build on her managerial experience and share her ever developing love for the mountains with all budding chalet hosts!


GEORGIE AYLWIN

“I’m a better person when I’m not HUNGRY!”

Likes Painting | House plants | Anything spicy | Festivals
Dislikes Egg mayo | Feet | Sitting still

My parents have always encouraged me to cook. My dad being an absolute curry fiend and my mum having been a chalet host herself has meant that I’ve never been far from the kitchen. I began cooking in my local pub when I was sixteen-years-old, and have since run my own pop-up restaurants.

At the age of eighteen I moved to Hull, where I studied Criminology at university. Living away from home meant I had much more freedom in terms of what ingredients I could buy and use, which made me think much more about the food I was eating and where it came from. This led me towards the decision to become vegetarian, both for health and environmental reasons. During my time in Hull, I also worked at a fantastic little Bistro, in which my enthusiasm for food was encouraged by it’s wonderful owner and head chef.

After graduating university, I worked a season as a Signature Chalet Host with Skiworld in St Anton. There I fell totally in love with the Alps, so I thought what better way to combine my two favourite things than to come back to Tignes to teach new chalet hosts to cook at the Mountain Cookery School!?