As Executive Head Chef at The Connaught, Anshu Anghotra has played a vital role in the launch of Jean-Georges at The Connaught in 2017 which took on a new take on “Mayfair’s gourmet dining” supporting Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten. Seeking inspiration for presentation from everything from floristry to architecture, Anshu gathers pieces of his surroundings to create dishes that are innovative and represent his everyday world by equally respecting his style of classic French training sprinkled with Asian flavours.
Anshu is a British chef of Indian descent, his culinary journey started in Dehli, India, where Anshu was raised, surrounded by vibrant street food markets, fresh produce, spices and flavors.
Anshu went on to develop these skills further while working at Raymond Blanc’s 2 Michelin Starred Le Manoir aux Quat’ Saisons in Oxfordsire. He was trained by Gary Jones, whose gifted style of effortless cooking became the “cutting point of his career.” He later joined Lanesborough as Head Chef where Celeste – Lanesborough’s Michelin-starred restaurant, an Oetker Collection – evokes the great gastronomic tradition, which is more than ever on the front of the culinary scene. The complexity behind ingredients and his cooking began to see every dish as a canvas.
Having mastered the art of classic French cooking and learnings from acclaimed Eric Frechon, 3 Michelin star chef at Le Bristol, he believes that these essential culinary techniques translate to, and can be applied to the Capital’s multicultural culinary highlights. There are 70 chefs in the kitchen in total, headed up by ex-Lanesborough chef Anshu Anghotra, with 15 chefs allocated to pastry and bakery alone.
My first Jean-Georges experience was at the Mark Hotel in New York. A glamorous destination of the Upper East Side yet offering simple and classic dishes. Jean-Georges at the Connaught is a replica of that but in the heart of Mayfair and in one of the most understated 5 star hotels you will come across.
Anshu Anghotra, the Executive Head Chef was hired by the Jean-Georges team to support and turn their vision for their London restaurant in to a reality. One of my favourite features of the restaurant is the stained glass designed by Jean-Michel Othoniel. It is a key feature at the restaurant and influences the mood and atmosphere of the space at any of time of day whether its morning or night!
How did you end up at JG at The Connaught?
I was working at The Lanesborough when I was approached by the the Jean-Georges team to discuss their idea behind opening a restaurant in London. I was flown over for a few intensive days to New York to experience the restaurants JG leads there. I had a 13 course tasting menu at Jean-George’s, the 3 Michelin star restaurant. It was an exhilarating experience and I decided to join the venture. I am now managing a team of 70 at The Connaught.
How would you describe the food at JG?
It is classic French cooking with Asian influence, it’s modern and healthy. The concept of afternoon tea is new to JG. We’ve tried to create something that is fun and driven by quality. It is not gimmicky. Dinner is an amazing experience at the restaurant, the atmosphere is electric.
What are some of your favourite dishes at the restaurant?
The truffle pizza, sea bass and you must try the lamb – it is cooked with Korean spices!
How is social media influencing views on dining?
Social media is a great tool – it helps you discover real hidden gems of London which you may not have stumbled upon otherwise. People have different tastes and they are on the lookout for different things – social media enables you to find that.
What other restaurants do you enjoy going to in London?
Roka Mayfair is on my way home and I absolutely love it! The food is consistent, they have great service and atmosphere. London is truly leading the way for restaurants globally.