Capital Centric Stars - Chef Interview with Laurent Lebeau
Chef/Patron The Red House, Newbury, Berkshire
As we welcome new restaurants and pubs to our portfolio we get to meet some fantastic restaurateurs, chefs, sommeliers and front of house teams. We've been showcasing their restaurants for the past few years so thought it about time we turned the spotlight onto the teams delivering the experiences to our groups.
In a series of short interviews we bring you a glimpse into the personalities of a few of those behind the scenes. Unsurprisingly we start fairly close to home.
Laurent was born and raised in the French Alps and learnt his craft at the cookery school in Nice, South of France. Following his National Service and having gained experience in a number of restaurants in France he relocated to the UK, and secured a position at Michelin starred Ma Cuisine, in London's Walton Street, where he stayed for a number of years rising to the position of Head Chef.
He then moved on to open the famous Cafe Pelican in St Martins Lane - at the time the largest French Brasserie in the UK where he stayed for 4 years before moving on to become head Chef at London's Soho Soho. An Executive role followed at famed French Brasseries 'Chez Gérard' and latterly Paramount restaurants, overseeing operations in nearly 80 restaurants. in 2009, with a desire to return to the kitchen, Laurent opened The Red House just outside Newbury in Berkshire where he remains whilst occasionally returning to London as Head Chef for The Wimbledon Tennis Championships in The Royal Room.
How would you describe working in your kitchen in 5 words?
Hard work with a sense of achievement, fun at times, fast, organised (not quite five but can't explain with fewer words)
What’s the secret for managing successful group bookings?
Having every dish, sauce and garnish ready for service. Good communication with FOH staff for perfect timing is essential. Be prepared for everything.
What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Recruiting and managing staff
The dish on your menu that you would eat every day?
Twice baked cheese soufflé.
What's the last dish you cooked for yourself?
Grilled tuna steak with olives, capers and cherry tomato salsa
Favourite food from your childhood?
Pan fried calves liver with parsley and garlic
Where's the last place you ate out?
La Bobina, a great tapas restaurant not far from us in Berkshire. Great Aubergine crisps (yup)
What's your guilty food pleasure
Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate!
The Red House is available exclusively to Capital Centric clients for both groups and FIT's. They can accommodate up to 150 pax (separate areas) for exclusive hire or up to 40 in the
Private Dining Room
Please contact Sara or Pia on firstname.lastname@example.org for menus and rates.