Interviewed October 2009
Antonin Bonnet is head chef of the Greenhouse, whose Mayfair news premises have for many years retained a Michelin star.
Q – How long have you been cooking professionally?
Since I was 20 years old so 18 years now.
Q – Where did you train to cook?
First with my mother and grandmother, then at Guy and Andre Gedda, Le Relais de Sevres in Paris, L'Oustau de Baumaniere, Michel Bras, The Oak Room and finally the Greenhouse.
Q – How would you describe your style of cooking?
Q – Is there a secret for a successful restaurant?
It is about the experience, a close balance between the reception, the service, the food, the space, the mood. It all needs to feel natural and relaxed and yet professional.....A thin line.
Q – Do you have a “signature dish” or favourite dish you enjoy cooking?
It would be the Grouse with Cocoa nibs lately
Q – Do you have a favourite ingredient?
Yes, the Poularde from Mieral
Which restaurant do you most enjoy eating at on your night off?
I take the kids and my wife to a small Japanese restaurant called Jin ki chi or simply go the our local pub the Lansdowne
What is your most interesting or fun experience from your time in restaurants?
Cooking for athletes at the Olympic game of Barcelona in 1992. It was great fun.
What would be your “last request” dish?
Truly and honestly a really simple thing. A crunchy baguette with a nice unsalted butter and a few slices of saucisson of Laguiole... with a glass of Gaia
Is there another chef that you most admire?
Amongst the few, Michel Bras, Alain Ducasse, Alain Passard, Pierre Gagnaire, Olivier Roellinger, Ferran Adria, Oriol Ballaguer, Frederic Bau, Antony Aduriz,.....
Any advice you would give to someone wanting to become a chef?
You really have to love it, it is a way of life and beyond a passion.
Any final thoughts you’d like to add?
Yes, we are going to refine the experience at the Greenhouse.