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JAMES LOWE LYLE'S
Originally from Brighton, 34-year-old James Lowe was head chef at St John Bread � Wine before
making his name as one third of The Young Turks chef collective, whose pop-up restaurant successes
included The Ten Bells in Spital elds. He has just launched his rst solo restaurant, Lyle's in Shoreditch.
When did you know you wanted to be a chef? Eating at The Fat Duck and St John within a few
days of each other, aged 22, made me think: 'I want to do this, I need to know how they did it.'
Where does your inspiration come from? You can nd inspiration in everything: design, weather,
landscape. It doesn't have to be food-related at all.
What's the most amazing thing you've ever eaten? Probably the prawns at Etxebarri restaurant
in Vizcaya, between Bilbao and San Sebastian in northern Spain. The meat and the juices in the
head are insane, they taste like a combination of foie gras and bisque.
What is your biggest achievement so far, and your aspirations? Opening Lyle's. I've been
working towards it for years. I would like to make it one of London's best restaurants.
Who would play you in a movie of your life? My business partner says it should be Laurence
Fishburne [Morpheus in The Matrix trilogy]. I hope he's joking. Turn to p.46 for a review of Lyle's.
I HATED SCHOOL AND JUST GOT STRAIGHT
ON WITH BEING A CHEF STEVIE PARLE
ANDY OLIVER SOM SAA
MasterChef runner-up Andy Oliver from Barnstaple is passionate about Thai cooking. The 32-year-old
has worked at London restaurant Nahm (which closed in 2012), The Begging Bowl in Peckham, and in
Thailand. He currently runs pop-up series Som Saa, while seeking a site for a permanent restaurant.
When did you know you wanted to be a chef? After three years in my twenties in a not very
ful lling job with BT, I realised I needed to stop fa ng around and get into a professional kitchen.
Where does your inspiration come from? David Thompsom [of Nahm], and the amazing number
of ordinary people in Thailand who can cook impossibly delicious food.
What's the most amazing thing you've ever eaten? A lamb dish I had at The Sportsman in
Kent a couple of years back. It tasted so good that I was speechless for the rest of the evening.
What is your biggest achievement so far? I spent six months working in a kitchen in Bangkok,
survived the 40-degree heat and learnt to speak enough Thai to work out what was going on.
Who would play you in a movie of your life? Someone with a slightly oversized nose.
STEVIE PARLE ROTORINO
After completing a course at renowned Irish cookery school Ballymaloe, Birmingham-born Stevie Parle
started work at the River Café when he was 16. He launched his Moveable Kitchen pop-up in 2008 and
this led to permanent restaurant Dock Kitchen. The 29-year-old opened Rotorino in Dalston this April.
When did you know you wanted to be a chef? I'd always assumed that I'd be a professional, as
my parents are both doctors, but I hated school and just got straight on with being a chef. I did a
course [at Ballymaloe Cookery School] and managed to score a job at the River Café.
Where does your inspiration come from? Travelling. My travels to di erent parts of the world
inspired the varied menu at Dock Kitchen, and it was my trips to Palermo, and around Sardinia
and Puglia that inspired me to create the southern Italian dishes at Rotorino.
What's the most amazing thing you've ever eaten? Live octopus in Korea, crawling ants in
Denmark, and fried tarantulas in Thailand. I travel the world seeking crazy things out.
What is your biggest achievement so far? Having two awesome kids. Nothing comes close.
Who would play you in a movie of your life? No one would ever take the role. It would be
seriously boring. Turn to p.43 for a review of Rotorino.