I was invited to become non-Exec Head Chef by the founder of 1855, Chris Mulhall, early in 2013. The road to the launch on the 11 Dec 2013 was very busy, manic, challenging and fun! So far the reaction to the concept and 1855 itself have been positive and encouraging. Our Trip Advisor stats are looking good and the reaction locally to the wine and food has been enthusiastic!
In partnership with Alistair Cooper (General Manager) and the team I created a menu which was debated and discussed at length but the open menu fulfills our fundamental goal to use locally sourced ingredients and food. The research was painstaking and not necessarily good for the waist line but I believe we have succeeded with a great menu selection which showcases a fabulous selection of locally produced food available for 1855 ‘s discerning customers that complements the extensive international wine list that Alistair has created.
The goal is to change the menu in line with seasonality and availability of produce locally. We have sourced cheese, cured meats, salad, bread, cakes and more locally. I cook much of the items on the menu in my kitchens and deliver into 1855 weekly.
A number of favourites have emerged which is great to see. These include Confit of Duck, Marinated Octopus, soups such as Mushroom, Tomato and my Pea and Mint. A popular summer addition has been the Scones for Cream Teas. I am looking at some new additions for the autumn and winter season approaching so please come and see us at 1855 and discover what is new!
1855 is in the Gastro/Brasserie category of the Oxfordshire Awards 2014 – http://www.oxfordshirerestaurantawards.co.uk/
Check the website for details of events at 1855: www.1855oxford.com