Countdown to Hospitality Exchange 2022 takes distinctly Spanish flavour

It is 99 days until Hospitality Exchange 2022 and there are at least 99 reasons why it’s a ‘not to be missed’ event for those in the tourism and hospitality industry. 

A major reason is the appearance of Spanish guest chef, José Pizarro, who will join the 2022 line up to discuss his culinary career, passion for simple Spanish ingredients and views on the future of food.  

His pathway to the kitchen is an interesting one, as believe it or not, he was torn between studying dentistry or food.  Thankfully, his love of food was just too strong, and he left his passion for dentistry at the kitchen door. 

Originally from a beautiful village, Talaván in Cáceres, Extremadura, José has lived in London for over 20 years, and is often described as the Godfather of Spanish cooking in the UK. He spent his early years training in the top restaurants in Spain, before becoming Head Chef at a Michelin Star restaurant.

After José landed on UK soil, he worked at some of London’s most prestigious Spanish restaurants including Eyre Brothers, Brindisa and Gaudi. In 2011, José opened his first solo venture, José Tapas Bar on Bermondsey Street. José Tapas Bar is a small and cosy venue, inspired by the bustling tapas bars of Barcelona.

Today, José has six venues in the greater London area and his passion for his native cuisine and its amazing range of ingredients has created a huge following, giving us an understanding of Spanish flavours, simple recipes and seasonal flavours.

A mantra of simplicity along with José’s charm, enthusiasm and passion for Spanish food has led to José appearing on popular foodie TV programmes. A regular on BBC 1’s Saturday Kitchen, José has also appeared on Sunday Brunch, This Morning on ITV, Weekend Kitchen with Waitrose, Rick Stein’s Christmas, Food Network’s ‘The Big Eat’ and James Martin’s Saturday Morning.

José has penned six books and his latest, The Spanish Home Kitchen: Simple, Seasonal Recipes and Memories from My Home, is testament to his love of cookery and the emotions it evokes. Dedicated to his mother, Isabel, her role as his culinary muse is evident. Recipes and their associated memories are brought to life with superb photography. 

Stephen Meldrum, President of the Northern Ireland Hotels Federation (NIHF), said:

“The countdown is now officially on for Hospitality Exchange 2022, which takes place in the Crowne Plaza Belfast on the 11th and 12th October 2022. 

“The line-up is one of our most impressive yet and we are delighted that guest chef, José Pizarro, will be in Belfast to share some trade secrets with aspiring chefs.

“The programme will focus on key industry issues, looking towards the future while focusing on food, people, performance and the economic importance of the sector.” 

Whether you own, manage or work in a hotel, B&B, pub, restaurant, museum, airline or coffee shop, if you’re interested in developing and want to tap into innovation to drive business, then Hospitality Exchange is where you need to be. For further information, log on to

Love Belfast
Love Belfast
Belfast guide to restaurants, bars, nightclubs, concerts, events, hotels, entertainment, special offers, news, gossip, travel, festivals and culture.

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