Why restaurants and events?
Every event is unique and I love how creative I can be with menus and dishes. At The Brewery, no day is the same and the idea of creating different cuisines and concepts keeps things fresh and exciting for myself and the food and beverage teams.
Tell us something you wish you had been told at the start of your career?
I was never told where you can take your career. I think a lot of people are not joining the hospitality industry because all they hear about is the working weekends, night shifts and, of course, it being very demanding as a job. There are so many exciting opportunities that people aren’t necessarily aware of, such as the opportunities to travel the world and the variety of venues and audiences you can cook for. If young people knew a little more about what they can achieve as a chef, I believe more would join.
What do you do in your spare time?
I love playing football, golf and walking my dog in Greenwich. And, of course, eating out at different restaurants is a must.
What’s your favourite restaurant or group of restaurants?
I love Roka! The sushi and food cooked on the robata grill there makes me very happy.
What would you be doing if you weren’t in restaurants?
An architect (you never know).
What motivates you?
Always looking for ways to improve my skills and the business. I’m constantly looking for ways to innovate the offering at The Brewery and The Grubstreet Author. Food is just one small part of creating an impactful event, so I have to understand all elements of an event’s logistics as everything, from menus to theming, intertwine. I also like to focus on bringing young talent into the industry - I love working with talented chefs who want to accelerate their careers and helping them achieve their goals.
Where was your last holiday?
I went to Mauritius and stayed at LUX Grand Gaube, which I would highly recommend it.
Which colleague, mentor or employer has had the biggest influence on your approach to the events business?
Steve Connell. He was my right hand man at The Brewery for 12 years, and his passion and desire to produce the best helped us achieve some great things in our career.
What keeps you up at night?
Food and money; they both work very closely together.
I wouldn’t like to say…
Moving to Sydney, where I really learnt my trade in the events industry.
What are you reading at the moment?
Shoe Dog by Phil Knight. It’s all about how Nike, the sportswear giant, began.
What piece of advice would you give to those looking to climb the rungs in the business?
That nothing is given to you. You need to work hard for what you want as well as having a clear idea of what your goals are and setting realistic targets to achieve these. The great thing about hospitality is you can achieve anything in this industry, you just have to go and get it.
If you could change one thing about the hospitality industry today, what would it be?
Not much, it’s a growing sector with so many creative people to collaborate with. It’s definitely an exciting industry to be in and I feel very privileged to be working where I work. Maybe I’d work a few less hours but I wouldn’t change anything else.
CV to date
Born: Essex, 1982
Education: NVQ Level 2 | Food and Health and Safety
2006-2010 - Dish Catering | Executive Chef
2010-2012 - The Recipe | Executive Chef
2012-present - The Brewery | Food Director