A Thai-inspired dish, it features line-caught seabass with crispy pork rinds, samphire, and a lightly-marinating spiced hot sauce poured over. He also demonstrates how to shuck an oyster, particularly focusing on the Gillardeau variety, which he calls one of the best.
Kirkwood joined the wholesaler and oyster restaurant brand in late 2014, having previous worked as head chef at J Sheekey, and held roles at Le Caprice, The Ivy, and Coq d’Argent. He first met founders Ben Wright and Robin Hancock 14 years' ago while working at Coq d'Argent.
Demonstrating on the restaurant’s 20-metre central dining bar, he talks sourcing, sashimi-quality fish, and the benefits of having your own wholesaler on tap.
Ben Wright and Robin Hancock themselves appeared in a recent video in November 2016, explaining their journey towards founding the brand in 2002, their experience in oyster farming, changing the ethos of 'high-end oysters' and how the former delicacy is shedding its ‘stuffy, less fun’ image and becoming a cool new street food – of which young British diners just can’t get enough.
The brand is also poised for expansion, with the aim of opening at least two new sites a year, and four already confirmed in the pipeline.
As well as Spitalfields Market, it already operates sites at Borough Market, Soho, Battersea, South Kensington, plus its Duchy native oyster farm in Cornwall, overseen by Wright himself.