What is your earliest memory of being interested in food?
I have always been interested in food as I grew up in a household where a home cooked meal was always on the table. The kitchen was the meeting point in my parents house. I remember as a kid making omelettes and cakes with my mum. We had an amazing vegetable garden, which is one of the reasons I am so passionate about farm-to-table eating.
What was it like being names the restaurant to achieve a Michelin star in the shortest amount of time in the whole of the guide’s history when you headed up Tom Sellers’ The Restaurant Story in London?
Winning the Michelin Star so quickly at Restaurant Story was overwhelming and an amazing experience for all involved. We had put in such a huge amount of work, which made it so much more rewarding.
Living and working as a chef at 22 Ships in Hong Kong must be very different to the life you led as a chef in London. What are the biggest changes you have had to get used to?
Hong Kong is surprisingly similar to London in that they are both cosmopolitan cities. One thing I’ve had trouble with is the limited amount of space in kitchens in Hong Kong. Importing the majority of ingredients we use can also be quite difficult but there is a huge selection.
What type of cuisine do you serve at 22 Ships? Name a few of your favourite dishes currently on the menu…
22 ships is a modern take on tapas restaurant with a bit of an Asian influence. Most the dishes we serve come from the Mediterranean areas of Europe with influences from Thailand, China, Korea and Japan. A few of my favorite dishes are
·Jamon, Manchego & truffle toastie, quails eggs
·Pork belly, chickpeas, squid, paprika
·Red snapper, pinenuts, chorizo, peppers
·Braised ox cheek, cauliflower, cavolo nero
·Squid and seabass burger, wasabi, kimchi
What are three of your most indispensable ingredients?
Extra virgin olive oil, Lemons, Rock salt
What is your favourite kitchen utensil and method of cooking?
Iguess it has to be sous vide cooking, my sous vide supreme water bath is a life saver we use it loads at 22 ships and it never lets us down it’s a must have for any kitchen
Describe your own culinary style in three words…
Clean, Tasty, Simple
Who inspires your cooking the most?
I’ve been lucky enough to work alongside some of the greatest chefs in Britain who have had huge influences on my cooking including Michael Caines, Tom Aikens and Athony Demetre to name a few. It has been an incredible experience to work with Jason Atherton, he lets me be creative and knows when to reign me in, I have learned a lot from him.
What has been the most memorable moment in your career so far?
My most memorable moment was winning Young Chef of the Year in 2004.
If you could take a plane ride to anywhere in the world, just for one meal, where would you go and why?
I would hop on a plane to France and head down to Marseille for an authentic bouillabaisse as it is one of my favourite dishes. There’s nothing better than eating sea-food by the sea with salt in the air and washing it down with a cold beer.