The fine dining chef with 16 years’ experience, Richard Bramble, successfully launched Warwickshire-based private dining and waiter service, Bramble Dining, with wife Claudia just weeks before the first Covid lockdown last year
Tell us about your cooking
My cooking is all about clean, fresh, honest food. I believe good ingredients from great suppliers is the key and I don’t like to ‘play’ around with them too much to produce fantastic food. I am privileged to work with great ingredients and I love it when a dish comes together, but what most excites me is seeing others enjoy my food.
The most important thing about my cooking has to be that it doesn’t just look good but each mouthful tastes amazing; respecting each element of the dish to provide that ‘wow’ factor. I’ve got dishes I’ve been cooking for years that I still tweak all the time. Every dish is a work in progress. So much passion and time and effort goes into every one of them.
How did you become a chef?
My love affair with food began aged just 16 when I took on a part-time job as a kitchen porter. I went on to learn new skills while working with chefs at independent restaurants where I also perfected my favourite English modern and classical French cooking styles.
What do you eat at home?
As a rule, we eat as family but on the occasions when Claudia and I eat together we love to enjoy dishes from our own menus. We don’t serve dishes to our customers that we don’t enjoy and haven’t been taste-tested by us.
Who’s the best chef in the world and why? And who’s the best in Brum?
The best chef in the world for me must be Anthony Bourdain, not only the food that he produced but from reading Kitchen Confidential he produced such honestly about his love for food and a chef’s way of life. The best of chef in Brum is a hard one as there are so many, but I love to eat at the Wilderness and at Simpsons.
How is your restaurant adapting to the current crisis?
We have been so lucky during the pandemic as our business lends itself to being flexible as we bring the restaurant to you at home. We have been restricted but haven’t had to stop for long throughout the last 18 months. We have so many loyal customers and new opportunities have grown organically through this wonderful network we have created.
Share a cooking tip
Food doesn’t need to be complicated to be amazing. It is all about using good produce and don’t play around with it too much. Simplicity is key.
What was your favourite food as a kid?
A loving memory for me as a child must be having fish and chips on holiday with my foster family; nothing better than sitting on the beach together.
Food heaven and food hell?
Food hell has to be kidneys and liver! My food heaven is most definitely medallions of beef fillet with rocket, parmesan and fresh truffles, with a side of skinny chips and Dijon mayonnaise.
What’s the most unusual thing you’ve eaten?
Dried crickets, mealworms and ants have to be three of the most unusual things I have eaten… surprisingly they were better than I had imagined!
If you weren’t a chef, what would you be?
I would love to be part of the sporting world. My biggest passion (after food) is football and I support Liverpool FC.