Pamela Kelly

Chef, cookery teacher, restaurant consultant and local food ambassador


I have been working in this industry for 20 years. I have great passion for food, people and hospitality.
My dad was a chef, and my mother worked front of house and in accommodation services throughout my childhood and teenage years. i spent a lot of time in kitchens growing up, i began peeling onions and making cheesecakes at the age of 11 under my dads direction.

At age 14 I began my first summer and part time job in Gulannes Hotel in Ballinasloe. I was a kitchen porter, bar cleaner, cloakroom assistant and finally sandwich maker and food preparation. It gave me an appetite to learn more.

I worked in many hotels and bars before and during my CERT course in Professional Cookery in GMIT.
In 2002 I represented the College in the Catex competitions, winning Gold and Silver medals in Pastry. This encouraged me to look outside of Galway, and brought me to Cork.

I began working in Jacques Restaurant as a commis chef. A restaurant that supports producers incredibly, this really taught me about provenance and seasonality.
I then worked in the Glucksman Gallery with the fantastic Pam Black from Ballymaloe House. This lady and the chefs I worked with there cemented my passion for local producers.

At the age of 22, I was a mother of a 2 year old boy, and decided to take on my first head chef role at Harveys Bistro. It was difficult, but also very rewarding.

I then went to take on another Head Chef position at Nash 19 Restaurant. A busy lunch time Restaurant with huge focus on local produce. Here I met some of the great Artisans I still use to this day.

After 6 years in Nash 19, I went to Perry Street Market Cafe. A new venture to be opened. it was a great experience to be a part of. Opening a Restaurant is definitely a deep notch in my belt.

2014 brought me to Market Lane. The most challenging Head Chef role I've had to date. The team comprised of 25 chefs. The culinary demand, the fast pace, the staff training, managing and retention plans made this an all encompassing exciting role.

Over the past few years I have also followed my other passions. Teaching cookery classes, giving talks on various culinary topics, cooking for weddings and other private events.

This is my greatest passion. And starting Chef O Clock has given me the freedom to do what I love most. I want to create events which are personal, creative and exciting to be a part of. Showcasing the great produce of Cork, simply and beautifully.