What was your first job?
Washing dishes at my local Italian restaurant.
What is your guiltiest food pleasure?
I never feel guilty about eating food, no matter what it is.
What’s the best restaurant meal you’ve ever had?
I ate at Ynshir in Wales with my wife just after our wedding and it was incredible.
What industry figure do you most admire, and why?
I’ve been really lucky to work under some top chefs that have massively inspired me and my cooking style. Phil Howard and David Everitt-Matthias are both incredible chefs that taught me invaluable skills, and I admire them greatly.
If you weren’t in kitchens, what would you do?
I actually studied geology at the University of Manchester, so I think I’d be a geologist.
Pet hate in the kitchen?
Anyone who says “yes” in response to an instruction that they didn’t understand – I’d much rather they kept asking questions until they got it 100%.
What’s the oddest thing a customer has said to you?
“I’m a vegan, but I can eat chicken and beef.”
What’s the dish you wish you’d thought of?
Heston’s (golden) beetroot and (blood) orange jellies. Simple, but such clever mis-direction.
Describe your cooking style in three words
Time and place.
Most overrated food?
Any vegetarian substitute for a non-vegetarian product. Veggie mince? Make a ratatouille. Veggie bacon? Are you really that desperate.
Restaurant dictator for a day – what would you ban?
I’d ban bad people management. It’s a culprit of the skills shortage we are facing that is rarely discussed.
If you could cook for anyone in the world who would you pick, and why?
Anton Mossiman, because he booked a table here last week, but couldn’t make it in the end.
What advice would you give someone starting out in the industry?
The people that make it are the ones that don’t give up.
Which single item of kitchen equipment could you not live without?
What do you cook at home on your days off?
I love my wife’s cooking and I really enjoy cooking at home, especially for my son. Anything like roasts, fish, soups, curries or pies.
What’s your earliest food memory?
Rampaging through my grandma’s garden devouring all her strawberries.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
Cook for guests, not accolades.
Where do you go when you want to let your hair down?
I spend pretty much all my spare time with my one year old boy.
Tipple of choice?
Gin, but a good one; Tanquery 10, Botanist and Martin Millers are delicious.
What would you choose to eat for your last meal?
The longest tasting menu ever created, hopefully it will last for a few days...