Lee Westcott - The Typing Room

TTF Interviews - Lee Westcott - The Typing Room

14-October-2014

Lee Westcott, Executive Chef at The Typing Room

 

The 16th May saw the long-awaited opening of The Typing Room in Bethnal Green’s Town Hall Hotel. At the helm stands Lee Westcott, who, spoon in hand, has been causing quite a stir! Ella Rose Paskett checks out the man of the hour and with many a mouth drooling to savour the taste of his stunningly playful creations, everything points to this cheeky chappy becoming a true sensation. After four years alongside Tom Aikens, Lee returns from a year in Hong Kong heading up Jason Atherton’s 22 Ships and Ham & Sherry. Now firmly planted back in London as executive chef of The Typing Room, the spotlight is shining directly on Lee and we can’t wait to see what this rising star will bring to the table. 

 

Lee Westcott

Age - 28 years old

Nationality - British

Current kitchen - The Typing Room

Previously worked at – Tom Aikens, Claridges, Noma, Per Se, 22 Ships, Ham & Sherry,

 

What inspired you to become a Chef ?

Was there a 'Eureka' moment? There was no Eureka moment, it’s something I actually fell into. But I did realise how much I enjoyed it very soon into my training.

 

What was your very first job? 

It was actually washing up in an English country pub. I had a lot of fun, mostly flirting with the much older hot waitresses. Got absolutely nowhere!

 

What three words best describe your cooking style? 

Natural, elegant & seasonal.

 

If you could only cook with 3 ingredients for the rest of your life which would they be? Only 3 ingredients?

Wow I can’t pick only 3! I do love Cauliflower, oysters & marmite! 

 

Which Chef inspires you the most? 

Tom Aikens was a huge inspiration for me and continues to be. 

 

What would be your last supper and who would cook it? 

It would be a shepherds pie, made by my mother. As soppy as it sounds, it’s the main dish she would make when I was a kid that I always looked forward to! 

 

If you had not been a chef, what would you have done? 

I did think about joining the army, but am not quite sure if I would have pursued it. I’d probably have ended up being a window fitter or painter?! 

 

What are your top three restaurants and why? 

The Ledbury as it's up there with the best in terms of amazing fine dining, The Dairy because the food is always sublime but in a great relaxed atmosphere and lastly Koya as it's the kind of place that chefs want to eat. Real good Japanese food! 

 

Tell us a secret ;) 

I genuinely thought a coconut was a nut for years as a kid! Oops! 

 

What’s your favourite kitchen utensil?  

A spoon. Without a spoon, a chef is nothing. 

 

Who would you love to cook for? 

Jim Morrison. But that’s definitely not going to happen. Shame. 

 

Guilty pleasure? 

Sushi - especially if I’m hungover!

 

What irritates you most about the industry (if anything)? 

The hours. This industry involves a lot of time! 

 

If you had more time, what you would do? 

Visit family more, eat out more & travel! 

 

What legacy would you like to leave behind? 

Hopefully I would have inspired some chefs that i’ve worked with and be seen as a fair and hardworking leader.

 

Who would be in your fantasy kitchen team? 

I’m quite fond of the team I have now actually ;) 

 

What is next on your to do/ to master list? 

At the moment, I’m just concentrating on the Typing Room as much as possible, trying to take it as far as we can.

 

What has been your proudest moment so far? 

Winning the Michelin star back when I was Head Chef for Tom Aikens. 

 

What dish would win your heart? 

Apple crumble!! Always a treat! 

Written by Lateef Okunnu


About the Author

Founder / Reviews

Lateef Okunnu's TryThisFor page

twitter - https://twitter.com/lateefokunnu

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email - lateef@trythisfor.com

Founder of TryThisFor.com - An 8 year stint as a food writer not only waged a constant war between Lateef and his waistline but resulted in daily requests for restaurant recommendations. Something had to be done about one of these, and considering a life without food was unthinkable, creating a food-guide was the next logical way to go. Having worked for numerous food-magazines, night-life guides and websites; it was time to create his own. 

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