Frustrated chef, food manic, drinks enthusiast & taste-maker.
Based in London but originally from Chile, I'm a food & drinks enthusiast who's still on a journey / mission to find the right places for the right occasions in the capital.
From pubs, to local shops and high-end eats, everything that you won't find on Timeout and other mainstream media.
Cooking is one of my passions, and most likely, you will find me hosting a dinner party every other weekend.
Follow me on this ongoing discovery journey across London and many other cities around the world.
THE LONG VERSION
I guess my story isn’t too different from many other sybarites out there but I'll share it anyway for you to understand more about me.
Born and bred in Chile, I moved to London more than 12 years ago and have the joy of being able to enjoy the culinary offering from such a cosmopolitan capital every week.
My passion for food and cooking resembles the famous flashback scene from Ratatouille “Anton Ego". That kid sitting on the chair was me but more involved, as I spent entire mornings and afternoons watching and helping my grandma cooking feasts for an entire family. She is an exceptional cook and had the joy and luck of having her as my food teacher, who showed me the basics around the kitchen; from harvesting to cutting, to bothering her while preparing the most delicious dishes.
I used to live in the capital city of Chile, Santiago, but spent most of my winters and summers in the southern part of the country, at my grandparents’ farmhouse. It all began there, my understanding of food, and the sensory elements to it; from picking and smelling the food, to getting the eggs from the barn or bringing milk to the house - that’s all that sparked my early interest in cooking. My grandmother of German heritage, my Hungarian grandad and my great grandmother who used to have a humble restaurant back in Hungary, brought a whole new dimension to the food we used to eat in Chile, mostly inspired by all the traditional Hungarian and German recipes.
I cannot imagine the privilege it was for my grandmother to have daily access to such a pantry, directly at her food steps (literally). That was the time when as a kid, we both used to pick all the ingredients one can think of to prepare family feasts. That also included meat, which mostly came from their cattle, as well as poultry, fresh unpasteurised milk and freshly laid eggs - the dream of today’s London chefs.
That chapter of my childhood inspired me to keep on cultivating this passion for food until today, now only from an aficionado perspective because I did not have the guts to pursue a career in the kitchen. I had a more serious approach to food, back when in my early 20s I had a small sushi delivery venture, delivering rolls for parties, dinners and events. Eventually, I had to call it a day when I decided to move to London.
Once in London and like many others in their mid-twenties who were looking for overseas experience, I had to first find a way of making a living in the capital. I started as a waiter at a couple of restaurants and clubs but finally managed to stick to a Thai restaurant for almost a year, where I also had the chance to learn some basics in the kitchen. And the story somehow repeated itself, I did not have the guts to “switch or begin” a new career in the kitchen, so I decided to continue with the original plan to become a nobody in the Digital Marketing and Social Media world. Thanks to that decision and to my career as a Communicator and Marketeer, I’m an educated and professional nobody, who can enjoy weekly meals at restaurants as well as cooking for my wife and friends. That’s what and where you’ll find me most weekends; hosting dinner parties because there’s nothing I enjoy more than having people who share the love of food, drinks and a good laugh around a table.
To me food goes beyond the act of feeding, it is a way to learn from a culture, the dedication, what happens around the act of cooking and eating, the sounds, smells, textures and mostly all the laughter - a sequence that can last hours.
The key to an enjoyable dinner party? A nice welcome cocktail, a selection of beers and wines, quality ingredients and a playlist to set the tone for either a quiet or late night of pure joy!
So when I’m not cooking, I’m either spending most of my nobody’s income in a pub, or restaurant or doing all of the above in a different country. With this blog, I intend to share my years of in situ research of the best culinary options in the capital, from cheap eats to high-end restaurants, to shops and markets every foodie should visit!
And how not to close this section with one of my favourite quotes by the one and only Francis Mallman, who in one of his first books and cooking series (way before Netflix), gives a window to what I described above.
"When it's time to sit down to eat, I don't care how people dress or talk, look, sound or even smell. All people are beautiful if they share one simple quality: respect for food, for the moment, and mutual respect, for those who cook, those who serve, and those who eat. Those people are always welcome at my table."