Dietmar learnt the restauranteurs art at his fathers side from a young age and over the years has worked for luxury hotel chains and owned his own businesses in seven countries, all the time accumulating awards, stars and points for his various restaurants and projects. His proudest achievements are the dozens of successful chefs and restauranteurs that have passed through his establishments and he was able to guide, mentor or inspire to greatness of their own.
His book “Table by the River” was published in November 2010 and is in the third print run.
He has been invited over the years to be a Guest Chef at many major culinary events and demonstrations as well on television.
Founder and Principal
Swiss born Dietmar comes from a family of restaurateurs and has been involved in running restaurants as well as preparing and cooking the highest quality of food since the tender age of 14. Leaving school at 16 to work for London's prestigious Savoy Hotel, Dietmar very quickly claimed the position of Chef Saucier before transferring to the group's Connaught Hotel, working under the renowned Michel Bourdin.
Having since worked at some of the world's most exclusive hotels and restaurants, Dietmar has honed his skills in incorporating local flavours and ingredients into his menus wherever he has worked. His innovation and expertise has been internationally recognized, garnering numerous awards. At 19, he was named “Young Chef of the Year” in London by The Culinary Academy and the Savoy Company’s “Best Young Chef in 1982”. After moving to New Zealand in 1983 to open Top of the Town Restaurant in the Hyatt Hotel, he was twice named “Chef of the Year” in New Zealand in both 1984 and 1985, during which time his restaurant was named “New Zealand Restaurant of the Year”.
Upon leaving New Zealand, Dietmar joined Regent International Hotels in Hong Kong and soon transferred to the Regent of Bangkok as Executive Sous Chef. Working in Asia enabled him to develop a greater understanding and love of exotic herbs and spices.
The hotel group soon rewarded his dedication and talent and in 1988 appointed Sawyere the role of Executive Chef at The Regent of Melbourne. <Le Restaurant> during his reign won every major restaurant award in Melbourne, including the coveted Good Food Guide Award.
However, in 1992, Dietmar received an offer to set up the restaurants at Sydney's Park Lane Hotel as Executive Chef in charge of Food & Beverage. This gave Dietmar his first opportunity to spread beyond the confines of the kitchen and influence the entire operation. The hotel fast became known for its quality cuisine and innovative restaurants, especially its flagship restaurant, <Gekko>, which soon found itself as one of Sydney's most unusual and fashionable venues.
Just a year later, an opportunity arose to create a restaurant on the top floor of Chifley Tower, an amazing space with views over Sydney harbour and the famous Opera House. Dietmar decided that the time had come to venture out on his own. Later that year, <Forty One Restaurant> opened its doors, which then over the next eighteen years won a staggering 45 “Best Restaurant” and “Best Wine List” awards, including holding the prestigious 3 Star award from the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide for nine years and winning “Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Of The Year” on four occasions as well as 3 stars in their annual guide.
In conjunction with this Dietmar first ventured into consulting and opened <Brasserie Cassis> which operated from 1994 to 1999, holding 1 Star in the SMH Good Food Guide and 1 star in the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. During the 90's Forty One and Brasserie Cassis were the training ground of many of Sydney's top young chefs for years to come such as Liam Tomlin, Justin North and Matt Kemp who have all went on to great acclaim in their own rights.
Deciding to expand 'overseas', Dietmar added a new fine dining restaurant in December 1988 located in Auckland, New Zealand. <Five City Road Restauran> was named by “Conde Nast Traveller” in their "Top Fifty New Restaurants in the World 1999." and was rated as the city of sails best restaurant.
Again under his consultancy company Dietmar also undertook many projects consulting to hotels and exsisting restaurants during this period including being Consultant Restaurateur & Chef to <Shrooms Restaurant> at Chjimes in Singapore which rated a 17/20 by the Straits Times under his supervision. Overhaul and re-design of Leading Hotel of The World - Hayman Island Hotel F&B operations. As well as being an inaugural member of “Singapore Airlines International Culinary Panel” along with 3 star Michelin chefs, George Blanc, Yoshihiro Murata and Gordon Ramsey, as well as New York's David Burke and San Francisco's Nancy Oakes. He served as a consultant to Singapore Airlines for five years.
In August 2007 the opportunity arose to obtain <Berowra Waters Inn>, an Australian dining icon located in an idyllic setting on the Hawkesbury River. After extensive renovation the restaurant and small hotel re-opened to great critical acclaim in November 2007.
After more than 18 successful years trade Dietmar closed <Forty-One Restaurant> in April 2010 to pursue other opportunities including adding a modern French Bistro to his existing operations, <Ad Lib Bistro>. That year Dietmar also celebrated the release of his first book Table By The River , which is now in its third print run.
Wanting his children to grow up in Europe Dietmar took the opportunity in mid 2013 to sell his company in Australia and relocate back to Switzerland with his family. To facilitate the smooth move and settle his family into life and himself into work in Switzerland Dietmar returned to five star hotels and took the post as Executive Chef i/c F&B at <The Widder Hotel> in Zürich. Here he successfully revised the F&B concepts including the opening of the new award winning <AuGust Brasserie>.
In early 2015 he decided to join the Samih Sawaris led project in Andermatt in the combined position of Director of F&B / Executive Chef of The Chedi Andermatt. This successful collaboration led to the <The Chedi Andermatt > being named “Gault & Millau Hotel des Jahres 2017”. He has also been awarded a Michelin Star for The Japanese Restaurant @ The Chedi. In 2019 Dietmar opened a second Japanese restaurant at 2330 metres in the ski area of Andermatt. This restaurant has also been awarded a Michelin Star making it the highest altitude Michelin star Japanese restaurant in the world. In 2022 Dietmar was awarded Gault Millau Schweiz - Rising Star of The Year Award.
With the start of 2018 Dietmar has decided to go out on his own once again and using the experience of his travels and lifetime and rooted with a desire to change the status quo he has embarked upon his most ambitious project of establishing a game changing consultancy focussed on the hospitality industry and in particular restaurants.
Dietmars goal is that in addition to his consultancy work, to create a Hotel & Restaurant Management company that specialises in unique and special properties whether they are stand alone restaurants, small to medium sized hotels or “restaurants with rooms”
A quality driven restaurateur, hotelier & chef, Dietmar is passionate about the superiority and diversity of local produce and believes there is always room to be the best at any given level of hospitality.
Having attended international schools in England and Asia as a child, Sawyere’s first language is English, but also speaks German and French. He is an avid reader and skis at every opportunity while maintaining his passion for food and wine - its creation, taste, service and design. His 1000 plus library of cookbooks attest to that.
Co-Founder & Consultant
Nicole McPhail was born in Melbourne, Australia and grew up on Sydneys northern beaches. While attending one of the best schools in Sydney Nicole also nurtured her love of dancing and the arts by completing training in classical ballet, jazz and tap. Her original career aspirations for the hospitality industry were shelved when she left school as she was offered a role in the Sydney production of the hit musical - 42nd Street.
While she loved the theatre and toured with 42nd Street she kept returning to the idea of the Hospitality and in particular Restaurant trade. After the end of the tour she decided to focus on her original chosen direction. Determined to learn the business from the bottom up she secured a service position at the then best restaurant in Australia .. Forty One Restaurant in Sydney. While perfecting her service skills she began to appreciate the synergy of the theatre and restaurants. Eager to gain more knowledge and wider range of experience she worked at several of Sydneys top restaurants... Tetsuyas, Aria, Marque ...
When the time was right Nicole secured a lease in one of Sydneys premier exclusive apartment developments to open Gastrodome... a concept she had been quietly planning. Gastrodome combined a casual full service dining offer along with New York style deli that produced food for in house dining or take away. Gastrodome was one of the first Australian venues to embrace the Bistronomie concepts of great food, great service but casual venue. Operating and running Gastrodome gave Nicole a first experience of being an owner-operator on a tight budget.
During this time she re-met and later married Dietmar Sawyere. Dietmars company was expanding at the time and they moved their base of operations to New Zealand where Nicole headed up Five City Road as General Manager. <Five City Road Restauran> was quickly named by “Conde Nast Traveller” in their "Top Fifty New Restaurants in the World 1999." and was rated as the city of sails best fine dining restaurant. During this time Nicole became an integral part of the company with a focus on developing the restaurant service cultures in each establishment, as well as back office and administration of the companies restaurants. When the couple relocated their base back to Sydney, Nicole first of all helmed Forty One Restaurant as General Manager and then later combined with Dietmar to personally open Berowra Waters Inn.
At this time the couple had the first of their three children together and Nicole took a less hands on roll in the company preferring to operate more administratively and conceptually. Upon moving to Switzerland Nicole has spent her time "integrating", developing her language skills and familiarising herself with the European style of hospitality.
Now being firmly settled in Switzerland, with the children older and with the formation of Silverfox Hospitality Nicole is very excited and ready to once again work alongside Dietmar in creating a Consultancy company that specialises in finding creative solutions for the hospitality and restaurant industry.