TWO years of planning is about to come to fruition for a York chef as he prepares for the opening of his first independent restaurant in the city.

Just under three years ago, Neil Bentinck made the decision to leave his head chef position at the award-winning Van Zeller restaurant in Harrogate, with the view to pursuing his dream of opening his own place.

After stints gaining further experience at restaurants across the country, Mr Bentinck is now set to open his restaurant Skosh in Micklegate in the spring.

Named after the Japanese word Sukoshi, meaning a small amount or a little, Mr Bentinck said the restaurant will offer a grazing style menu of internationally influenced dishes served from an open kitchen.

He said: "This independent restaurant is not about reinventing the wheel, but rather bringing together all the best aspects of the emerging casual fine dining culture."

Ahead of opening his restaurant Mr Bentinck undertook opportunities to work in award winning kitchens around the country in a bid to come to terms with some of the complexities of setting up his first business.

In London, he worked with Sophie Mitchell in Knightsbridge as well as starring as guest chef in a string of sell-out popups at East London-based urban holding Stepney City Farm.

Back up North, Mr Bentinck took on several contracts with Michelin-starred restaurants, including Northcote and The Star Inn.

Mr Bentinck attributes his "eclectic" cooking style to his late father’s Indian heritage. Born and raised in India, his dad Mike moved to England in the early 1970's and was always cooking traditional Indian dishes alongside Jackie, Neil’s mum, and her more classic British recipes.

Mr Bentinck has since honed his skills in some of Yorkshire's popular culinary institutions including The Sun Inn, in Colton; Blue Bicycle, in Fossgate; Churchill Hotel, in Bootham, and the Michelin-starred Pipe and Glass in South Dalton, while also interspersing these with trips and work abroad in Australia, Thailand, America, New Zealand and Japan.

Mr Bentinck has described the sourcing of ingredients and service as "consciously meticulous", he be believes it takes more than one chef to create a great restaurant, but rather a "network of incredible suppliers, producers and craftspeople".

Ahead of opening, Skosh has already worked in collaboration with a number of local businesses and organisations including Bean & Bud, an award winning independent coffee shop in Harrogate; Bishy Road's Pig and Pastry;The Attic Gallery Bar, which sits above Harlequins cafe in York, Goodness Growing vegetable farm near Strensall; York brewery Ainsty Ales; Wolds-based beef supplier Yorkshire Wagyu Company, and Yorkshire ceramist Caroline Burton, among others.