Greece’s Asimakis Chaniotis is the executive chef of French-styled Pied à Terre, one of the finest London restaurants with a coveted Michelin star to its name.
The 28-year-old, who was born in Athens but grew up in Peristeri, is the youngest Michelin star chef in London and the first Greek outside of his native country to receive this prestigious accolade.
Asimakis started working at the prestigious Pied à Terre restaurant when he was just 22 years old and honed his culinary skills alongside the likes of renowned chefs Marcus Eaves and Andy McFadden. In 2018, at the age of 27, he was appointed executive chef by the restaurant’s legendary owner David Moore.
We sat down with Asimakis to find out about his favourite foods, dishes and inspirations.
What or who inspired you to become a chef?
I’ve always loved food and that passion is definitely the basis for my inspiration! Since a young age I used to ask my mother to show me what she was doing, ask how she was cooking things, and this was long before I ever decided to become a professional chef.
What’s your signature dish?
My signature dish is cherry wood smoked French quail with celeriac rose, 63 degrees confit rich Italian egg yolk, 24-month aged Parmesan, black winter truffle and roasted Piedmont hazelnuts.
Do you have a favourite time of year or set of ingredients that you look forward to working with?
Not really, I love winter, love deer hunting, pears and walnuts etc, but I also adore summer with its beautiful strawberries, peas and fresh herbs. All seasons are unique, and each ingredient is beautiful in its own way.
What is your favourite ingredient?
My favourite ingredient is probably fresh sea urchin. The taste of it is absolutely amazing and it’s like an explosion of the sea in your mouth.
What would you do if you weren’t a chef?
I’d be ship’s captain.
What is your favourite dish to cook at home?
I don’t have a specific dish, but simplicity is best so probably a slice of my homemade sourdough, charred on the stove and served with a very ripe tomato dressed with the olive oil my family makes in Greece and wild oregano that I collect every year when home in Kefallonia.
When are you happiest?
Probably when I see a happy customer who has really enjoyed what we have created for them. I love hearing feedback from someone that appreciates what we do.
When you’re not in the kitchen where can you be found?
Probably on a day trip somewhere in the country, I love exploring the UK countryside and getting out of London.
What’s your favourite takeaway or comfort food?
It has to be Meat Liquor, their XXX is the best hangover cure.
Where is your favourite place to dine?
I don’t really have one favourite, I tend to go out and try lots of different places, dishes, environments etc. I do have a soft spot for Brasserie Zedel though, it’s just a classic.
Pied à Terre will reopen on 2nd September and remains open for takeaways.
Address: 34 Charlotte St, Fitzrovia, London W1T 2NH
Phone: 020 7636 1178