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Tom Aikens is one of the UK’s most acclaimed and inspirational British chefs. With a father working in the wine industry and a childhood mostly spent gardening and cooking with his mother, Tom put food and the use of the finest ingredients at the centre of his life from a very early age.

His remarkable career took him to David Cavalier’s in Battersea, Pierre Koffman’s La Tante Claire, Joel Robuchon in Paris, Gerard Boyere’s in Riems and Pied-à-Terre to name a few. It was at the latter that Tom became the youngest British chef ever to be awarded two Michelin stars, aged just 26. Tom remained at Pied-à-Terre for five years, then going on to open his immensely successful eponymous restaurant, Tom Aikens (2003-2014), which won a Michelin star and rising 2 star in 2009.

Tom currently has 3 Tom’s Kitchen sites: the Chelsea original, which opened in 2006, Canary Wharf (2013), and the first UK site outside of London opened in Birmingham’s The Mailbox in December 2016. There are also 2 Tom’s Kitchen Delis, adjacent to the restaurants in Canary Wharf, Birmingham,

Tom also launched a new sharing concept, Pots, Pans & Boards, in Dubai (2015).

In October 2018 in Abu Dhabi Tom successfully launched 3 restaurants in the New Edition Hotel which is a ground-breaking hotel concept brought by Ian Schrager, in collaboration with Marriott International.

The concepts are Market at EDITION, an imaginative, healthy lifestyle restaurant open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with a focus on healthy, no waste, farm to table cooking, each kitchen will make use of each ingredient to its entirety.

The Oak Room, is a traditional English oak panelled restaurant, celebrating world-class Beef with a British rock ‘n’ roll flair, new- age steak house encourages with the very best produce, free from formality and pretense but always thoughtful and precise. Uncomplicated in approach, the menu will consistently showcase signature British dishes.

Then a coastal Mediterranean-style restaurant, called Alba Terrace, light lunches and sharing plates to linger over. Upon arrival to Alba Terrace, guests are greeted by a large brass clad aperitif bar, with bright lime oak wall pannelling, sheer curtains and vibrant plants, bringing the outdoors, in. The food has taken inspiration from the South of France and Provence and the coastal roads of Italy.

Tom has written three books; Cooking (2006), Fish (2008), and Easy (2011), and has made several appearances on television, reaching the final banquet of 2013’s Great British Menu on BBC2 in aid of Comic Relief, and is a regular guest on Great British Menu as a Judge and Great British Bake Off’s The Extra Slice.

Tom is dedicated to serving only the highest quality, ethically sourced ingredients and continually supports The Environmental Justice Foundation to raise awareness of illegal ‘pirate’ fishing and diminishing fish stocks. He also works closely with various charities including: the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Campaign, Royal Marsden Cancer Campaign and School Food Matters, where he teaches young children basic cooking skills.

Outside of work, Tom is an avid sportsman and has a great passion for cycling. He has entered races including the Marmotte, Luc Alphand and the Etape de Tour up Mount Ventoux. In addition to participating in several London Marathons, he also completed the Marathon des Sables in 2010, running six marathons across the Sahara Desert in five days to raise money for Facing Africa. In 2012, Tom was selected as a Torch Bearer for the London Olympics and carried the Olympic Torch through the streets of Chelsea.

We have featured Tom many times on our chef platform, mymuybueno Chefs In 2017, Tom was our first interview for mymuybueno Chefs Get Personal, you can read our interview with Tom here https://mymuybueno.com/tom-aikens/

€550
  • Asset 1
    09.00-16.00
  • Advanced Level
  • Asset 1
    mymuybueno Cookery School Folder*
    Recipe Sheets
    All Ingredients & Equipment
    Certificate of Attendance
    Tea & Coffee
    Lunch (you will eat everything that you make)
    Glass of Wine

    *New students only

    SKILLS COVERED
    • Certain Knife Skills
    • Pickling
    • Sous Vide
    • Practise of Compressing
    • Fish Preparation
    • Herb Oils
    • Water Bath Squid
    • Espuma
    • Mousse & Bombe

    TYPICAL RECIPES
    • Root & Stem Salad with Mandarin Dressing
    • John Dory, Cauliflower, Minted Squid, Jasmine
    • Green Tea & Yogurt



    Tom’s Story

     

    For as long as I can remember – probably the age of 8 or so – my twin brother and I were helping out in the kitchen with my mother. She would involve us in making cakes and home baking, or just weighing things out, but we were always on hand to help to lick out the occasional sticky raw cake mix that was left in the bottom of the bowl.

     

    Living in Norfolk we had a large back garden where we grew a lot of our own fruit and vegetables; Understanding seasonality and the simple taste’s of nature  was the start of my further footsteps into the kitchen.

     

    In 1986 my brother and I joined catering college in Norwich after which I went straight to London. I sent my (small) CV to about 30 different hotels and restaurants and every one came back with the same answer – sorry not enough experience.

     

    David Cavalier at Cavalier’s restaurant in Battersea was the first position I found but only by approaching David and offering to work for free for six months, after which he gave me a paid job. These were my very early and formative years as a young chef.

     

    One day I asked David if he could speak with Pierre Koffman to see if he could get me a job with him at La Tante Claire, where I moved and really learned speed of service, prep and classic French cooking.

     

    Then I went to work with Richard Neat at Pied a Terre.  I learnt an awful lot from Richard and I have to thank him as he got me a place at restaurant Joel Robuchon.

    So after Pied a Terre I went to France to work for Joel Robuchon which was an incredible hard but remarkable milestone in my career-making.

     

    The days were unbelievably long, I’d be up at 4.40am and have just as little as 3 hours of sleep every day. No amount of Neurofen could take away the fatigue headaches that started by Thursday.

     

    Despite the toughness of those days I have so many fond memories of Paris, not just the work but all the cafe’s, markets, museums, gardens.

     

    From there I went and worked in Reims for Gerard Boyer, where one day when I was 26 I got the call from David (Moore) about going back to be a co-owner and head chef of Pied a Terre. I couldn’t say no to the opportunity to become a head chef at the age of 26 so I took it with both hands and went back to London to take over Pied a terre. Then he left after a few weeks with his brigade, leaving me with no staff and all the pressure to keep the star.

     

    After the first year I kept the second star at Pied a Terre and a  weight was lifted off me because I realised what it meant to hold such an accolade and have the associated reputation as a chef. It was very hard to cope with the pressure at that age – and that status at that age –it was barmy, nuts, we were all ecstatic and I had a big grin all that day.

    Then I went to work for Carole Bamford at Daylesford in 2000.  Many wondered why I made this choice and the simple reason was that I wanted an opportunity to work on a real farm, learn about produce and the true importance of traceability and sustainability.  I also immersed myself in the world of organic farming and opened Daylesford Organics on the farm with Carole Bamford where I got to truly grasp the importance of locally grown produce.

    In April 2003, I opened Tom Aikens Restaurant in Chelsea and earned numerous prestigious critical accolades, including a Michelin star in 2004 and a ‘rising two-star’ status in January 2008 and 5 AA Rosettes.

    My experience at Daylesford later on inspired me to create the first UK restaurant that was truly inspired by producers and farmers – Tom’s Kitchen.

    I opened the first Tom’s Kitchen in Chelsea in 2006 to huge excitement, as this was the first restaurant of its kind that made the suppliers the heroes and championing their wonderful produce.  I embraced the story of farm to plate and made a conscious effort to include this as part of the Tom’s Kitchen experience, educating guests in an approachable and interesting way.

    I then opened two more Tom’s Kitchens: Canary Wharf (2013), and the first UK site outside of London opened in Birmingham’s The Mailbox in December 2016.

    My first cookbook – Tom Aikens: Cooking – was published in October 2006, then the second cookbook FISH was published in November 2008. The third book on simple cooking called easy in 2011.

     

    In 2015 I consulted on the new Soho Farmhouse being the eighth UK Soho House, which included the farm’s existing 18th century buildings, a seven-bedroom farmhouse, a four-bedroom cottage and 40 wooden guest cabins. Developing all of the kitchens across the project, including all the menu’s.

     

    Further afield I launched a new sharing concept, Pots, Pans & Boards, in Dubai (2015).  The concept for Pots, Pans & Boards came from my childhood memories in the British countryside, of a busy family kitchen, cooking in a bustling, comforting environment and my mother serving food straight out of the pot, pan or board onto the table

    In October 2018 in Abu Dhabi I recently launched 3 restaurants in the New Edition Hotel which is a ground-breaking hotel concept brought by Ian Schrager, in collaboration with Marriott International.

    The concepts are Market at EDITION, an imaginative, healthy lifestyle restaurant with a focus on healthy, no waste, farm to table cooking.

    The Oak Room, a traditional English oak panelled restaurant, celebrating world-class Beef with a British rock ‘n’ roll flair, new- age steak house, free from formality and pretense but always thoughtful and precise.

    Then a coastal Mediterranean-style restaurant, called Alba Terrace, serving light lunches and sharing plates to linger over, where food gets its inspiration from the South of France and Provence and the coastal roads of Italy.

     

    I have gone a long way from experimenting with my brother in mum’s kitchen to where I am now. But the true taste of simple ingredients combined with the techniques I learned through the years form the top chef and mentors I had, is what my dishes are all about.

     

    I am dedicated to serving only the highest quality, ethically sourced ingredients and continually support The Environmental Justice Foundation to raise awareness of illegal ‘pirate’ fishing and diminishing fish stocks. I also work closely with various charities including: the Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Campaign, Royal Marsden Cancer Campaign and School Food Matters, where I teach young children basic cooking skills.

    Outside of work, I am an avid sportsman and have a great passion for cycling. I have entered races including the Marmotte, Luc Alphand and the Etape de Tour up Mount Ventoux. In addition to participating in several London Marathons, I also completed the Marathon des Sables in 2010, running six marathons across the Sahara Desert in five days to raise money for Facing Africa. In 2012, I was selected as a Torch Bearer for the London Olympics and carried the Olympic Torch through the streets of Chelsea.