London boasts some of the greatest restaurants in the world, led by an array of brilliant chefs, both new and established. The constant influx of global talent brings creativity, new cuisines and incredible flavour to London’s plates, constantly revolutionising the experience of dining out.
See world-class chefs cooking up a storm on stage at the AEG Taste Theatre and in the Taste of London kitchens, and join the celebrations for culinary legend Pierre Koffmann. Guests include:
Nathan Outlaw The innovative talent behind his eponymous two Michelin-starred restaurant in Cornwall and Outlaw’s at the Capital Hotel next to Harrods.
Monica Galetti (pictured) New Zealand-born Galetti, acclaimed chef and Professional MasterChef judge, made her name as senior sous chef at Le Gavroche and has a new book, ‘The Skills’, coming out later this year.
Pascal Aussignac Aussignac has earned wide acclaim for the sumptuous French cuisine at Michelin-starred Club Gascon, drawing on the influences of his native Toulouse.
Francesco Mazzei His upbringing in southern Italy has played major part in Mazzei’s career as a top chef, valuing good food from farm to table and even picking up a few skills working from the age of eight at his uncle’s gelateria.
Daniel Doherty Duck & Waffle’s executive chef is a champion of first-class British cuisine. His background is suitably impressive: he served an apprenticeship at the Michelin-starred 1 Lombard Street before opening the five-star-rated Old Brewery in Greenwich.
José Pizarro Pizarro developed his love for exciting cooking at the award-winning Meson de Doña Filo in Madrid before moving to the UK 15 years ago. After serving time in some of London’s most celebrated Spanish restaurants, he opened two of his own – José and Pizarro.
Pierre Koffmann Taste of London marks the fiftieth anniversary of culinary legend Pierre Koffmann’s career. Having trained an array of star talents through the years – including Tom Aikens, Gordon Ramsay, Marcus Wareing, Bruno Loubet, Tom Kitchin and Jason Atherton – he is widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest chefs. Former protégé Marco Pierre White is among the special guests joining the celebration.
The full list of participating chefs includes Cláudio Cardoso, Allan Pickett, Bruno Loubet, Sergio Sanz Blanco, Gus Crosby, Yahir Gonzalez, Rohitt Ghai, Eric Chavot, Andrew Dargue, Hamish Brown, Simon Whiteside, Bjoern Wassmuth, Steve Groves, Vivek Singh, Pasquale Amico, Lee Westcott, Jun Tanaka, Yianni Papoutsis, Scott Hallsworth, Sebby Holmes, Guy Betteridge, Ben Tish and Jaques Fourie, and Michael Reid.
Go to www.tasteoflondon.co.uk to see the latest additions to the line-up.
La Bodega Negra (restaurant)
The neon sign outside reads ‘sex shop’; the mannequin in the entrance wears a PVC gimp suit. But the real excitement begins when you descend the stairs into the bowels of this nightclub-like restaurant. It’s so dark and loud you’ll need a moment to adjust (the light bulbs have been blacked out). By comparison, the homely Mexican cooking can feel run-of-the-mill, though effort is put into presentation. On our visit, soft flour tacos with a tender beef filling arrived beautifully arranged on a specially designed wooden board; a crunchy cheese and roasted tomato quesadilla was served ‘open’; pinto beans with a spicy chorizo kick came in a dinky glazed bowl. The real highlight was the dish least concerned with its own looks: a rich lamb shank in intensely dark juices. Seafood cazuela (a one-pot dish like a wet paella), containing clams, squid, prawns and mussels, was creamy, tangy and perfectly fine, though not especially memorable. Factor-in the small portions and two-hour table limits (though you can decamp to the bar), and you might wonder what the fuss is all about. But that would be missing the point. You come here to see and be seen, and for a thrilling atmosphere and exceptionally friendly service. A must-try. La Bodega Negra also have a cafe round the other side (entrance on Moor St).
Venue says: “Get 50% off food Sunday to Wednesday if you dine before 7pm. Book using the code 'Frida'.”