I was born in Australia to English parents, my father had joined the Australian Army after both had served in the English army during the war and they settled eventually in NSW. I fell in love with cooking at 12 in my first year at high school and cooking with my mum, I left home at 16 and started my first job at The Queanbeyan Leagues Club whilst studying my 4 year apprenticeship.
Leaving there I became joint Head Chef at 23, from there to Melbourne and back to Canberra to open my own restaurant Green Herring with my partner Jane Herring in 1998 aged 30.
We won our first award in 1990 and from then on we continued to win awards for the next 20 years and we became a name in the capital restaurant circuit, People came to eat my food and that’s a good feeling, I was part of the Slow Food Movement and demonstrated alongside Fergus Henderson on the same stage at a Melbourne food festival, Also with Rick Stein in another demo class. I have featured in several cookery books and life in Australia was good… then in 2008 I took my first trip to England for a two week holiday, fell in love with the country and my now wife Deb and I gave it all up to work & live here.
I joined forces with Deb & her company Chives Catering Ltd who just happened to need a new Head Chef, Chives continues to win awards and recognition in the wedding and event industry and I also had the honour of cooking a three course lunch for the Queen and 99 guests at the RBLI centenary lunch alongside a buffet for 300 in the adjoining marquee in November 2019, a very proud day.
I knew I needed my own project so in 2015 I founded Green Herring Catering Co UK. It is where I do private fine dining in private houses, Pop ups in our kitchen and art galleries and just have some fun with cooking. I love art and I have many pieces from Australia that were traded for dinners! So the idea of the pop ups in galleries meant our guests could gaze at pieces for hours over food before deciding to buy! Food is art too of course.
There has to be music whilst I am cooking or doing anything at all! From heavy rock to classical, movie tracks to PitBull, so it’s always pretty noisy in our production kitchen and occasionally I do let the team choose the music, always learning.
I love watching Chef’s Table, it stirs so many emotions, learning about other chefs journeys, the struggles and rewards.
Finally, I love travelling and being in the UK makes that so accessible, discovering new ingredients around the world and trying new dishes always makes me happy! I always want to rent an apartment so I can buy at the local markets and cook, as much as I also enjoy eating locally I can only be out of the kitchen for so long!