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Chef Andre Garrett

André Garrett, chef at Corinthia Hotel London

by Great British Chefs 14 May 2013

André Garrett says he knew the life of a chef was for him from watching his grandmother manage a restaurant. Trained in classic French cookery, he honed his skills alongside the likes of Nico Ladenis, Bruno Loubet and Chris Galvin, before striking out on his own at Cliveden House and now, Corinthia Hotel London.

Growing up in Bath, André Garrett always knew he would become a chef, and quickly found his way into the kitchens of local restaurants. After training at City of Bath College, he spent two years at Hunstrete House Hotel as a commis chef, before departing for London and landing a job with Nico Ladenis at Simply Nico.

Under Nico's mentorship, André flourished. He rose through the ranks, eventually working as chef de partie at three-Michelin-starred Chez Nico, before leaving to work with Bruno Loubet at Bistrot Bruno. ‘Working with Bruno was quite something,’ he grins. ‘Nico and Bruno are two completely different chefs. Bruno is very flamboyant – you wouldn’t call him a kitchen manager, but he’s a great cook.’

After two years at Bistrot Bruno, André returned to Nico Central as head chef, becoming the youngest to ever lead the restaurant kitchen. In 2000, André joined forces with his next great mentor Chris Galvin, at The Orrery in Marylebone. Chris encouraged André to enter a number of competitions, including the Roux Scholarship, which André later won. He soon took on head chef duties at Galvin’s Orrery, furnishing the eatery with a Michelin star, which he kept until his departure for Galvin At Windows.

‘Chris was a huge, huge influence,’ André says of his old mentor. ‘On food style, management and personality he was the perfect chef for me in a way. Very, very tough, but shrewd as well, and great to work for. He’s a hugely inspiring character.’ Chris also encouraged André to study for a leadership diploma, which he completed whilst he was at The Orrery. ‘Chris did a full-on degree in Culinary Arts and Management when I was at The Orrery with him,’ says André. ‘He was just finishing it during the year when I joined him. He'd always say that's aided him massively in running his own business. Eventually as a chef you’re going to have to lead teams, handle HR and strategise for the year ahead. I’ve found it massively helpful.’

From this point, André’s profile skyrocketed. He earned a Michelin star for Galvin at Windows, before striking out on his own at beautiful Cliveden House in Berkshire, opening Restaurant André Garrett to huge acclaim. His classical background and deep knowledge of ingredients was a perfect fit with the stately hotel, and he established the hotel-restaurant as one of the best in the country over the next five years.

At the beginning of 2019, André left Cliveden House to return to London and oversee the food and beverage offering at Corinthia Hotel London (with the exception of Tom Kerridge’s Bar & Grill). Overlooking the River Thames and just minutes from Trafalgar Square, Corinthia Hotel London lies in the very heart of the capital. André is beginning by focusing on The Northall, a European restaurant with an emphasis on fish and seafood using the finest British ingredients.

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