Pearls of Wisdom

Pearls of Wisdom

Some of the biggest names in the industry including chefs, restaurateurs, hoteliers, and publicans reveal their thoughts on life, career and hospitality.

Heiko Figge, managing director of Guoman & Thistle Hotels

Heiko Figge: Pearls of Wisdom

By Peter Ruddick

German-born Heiko Figge was appointed managing director of Guoman Hotels and Thistle Hotels at the beginning of 2010 but his association with the hotel industry and the Thistle brand goes much further back as does his commitment to helping employment...

Fuchsia Dunlop, a leading voice on Chinese food, talks about her work in the industry

Fuchsia Dunlop: Pearls of Wisdom

By Joe Lutrario

A leading voice on Chinese food, Fuchsia Dunlop trained at the Sichuan Institute of Higher Cuisine in Chengdu. The author of several cookbooks, she has been researching regional Chinese food for more than a decade and consults at three restaurants in...

Ruth Rogers, co-founder of The River Café

Ruth Rogers: Pearls of Wisdom

By Luke Nicholls

Ruth Rogers opened Italian restaurant the River Café on the north bank of the Thames with friend Rose Gray in 1987. Having initially opened as a staff canteen, the restaurant slowly emerged as one of the standout restaurants in London, earning its Michelin...

Italian chef Giorgio Locatelli shares his pearls of wisdom

Giorgio Locatelli: Pearls of Wisdom

By Joe Lutrario

One of the UK’s most respected Italian chefs, Giorgio Locatelli is chef patron at Locanda Locatelli in London’s Mayfair and a second restaurant in Dubai. He has featured in three major TV series and has published two books with a third in the works.

Mark Derry, chief executive of Brasserie Blanc

Mark Derry: Pearls of Wisdom

By Peter Ruddick

Industry veteran Mark Derry has built a reputation running and advising premium casual dining restaurant brands. In 2007 his Loch Fyne Restaurants company was sold to Greene King; now as chief executive of Brasserie Blanc Derry is leading the group in...

Rick Stein. Photo: Anna McCarthy

Rick Stein: Pearls of Wisdom

By William Drew

The chef and TV presenter runs three seafood restaurants in Cornwall, as well as two fish and chips shops and numerous related ventures. Now based partly in Australia, he talks fish, fights and fair portions.

Alan Murchison, head of 10 in 8 Fine Dining Group

Pearls of Wisdom: Alan Murchison

By Luke Nicholls

Alan Murchison took up his first post in the kitchen as a porter at the age of 14. During the 1990s, the Scot worked in a number of Michelin-starred kitchens, including Claridges, Nobu, Le Manoir aux Quat' Saisons and L’ortolan. He returned to the...

Hugo de Castro, concierge at the Grand Jersey Hotel & Spa in St Helier

Pearls of Wisdom: Hugo de Castro

By Emma Eversham

Portuguese-born Hugo de Castro has worked in the hospitality industry for 40 years, 30 of which have been spent as concierge at the Grand Jersey Hotel & Spa in St Helier. He has seen the hotel change hands four times, most recently in August 2011...

Sriram Aylur's Quilon restaurant has just reopened following a three-month refurbishment

Pearls of Wisdom: Sriram Aylur

By Luke Nicholls

Chef Sriram Aylur embarked on his culinary career in his own father’s restaurant before working his way up to lead the kitchen at the Taj Gateway Hotel in Bangelore. It was there he launched his own Karavali restaurant which was voted one of the top five...

Gerard Basset

Pearls of Wisdom: Gerard Basset

By William Drew

The owner of Hotel TerraVina in the New Forest and co-founder of Hotel du Vin discusses wine, cheffing and his conversion into a true Brit.

Vivien Sirotkin, operations director, QHotels

Pearls of Wisdom: Vivien Sirotkin

By Luke Nicholls

In a week that marks International Women’s Day, there is no one better placed to give her thoughts on life, her career and hospitality than Vivien Sirotkin. With over 30 years experience in the industry, Sirotkin - currently director of hotel operations...

Nick Tamblyn, chief executive of Kornicis Group which operates the Smollensky’s, Jamies Bar and Henry J Beans brands

Pearls of Wisdom: Nick Tamblyn

By Peter Ruddick

Nick Tamblyn has a strong track record in both the business and operations side of running succesful bars; most recently as chief executive of Kornicis Group, which operates the Smollensky’s and Henry J Beans brands. Tamblyn has also worked for First...

Pearls of Wisdom: Jeremy Lee

Pearls of Wisdom: Jeremy Lee

By Stefan Chomka

The newly-installed head chef and partner at Quo Vadis in London reflects on his Soho surroundings after 16 years at Bermondsey’s The Blueprint Café, which is owned by D&D London.

Richard Muir

Pearls of Wisdom: Richard Muir

By Emma Eversham

Richard Muir has worked in the industry for the past 30 years, starting out as a chef before moving into corporate catering. He was managing director of Sodexo’s UK corporate business and opened restaurants for Gary Rhodes before buying and redeveloping...

Davide Scabin

Pearls of Wisdom: Davide Scabin

By Stefan Chomka

The chef-proprietor of Combal Zero in Piemonte, northern Italy – a regular on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list – is a pioneer of conceptual cooking.