1 Michelin Star Chefs: Agnar Sverrisson, chef owner, Texture

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th January 2018

Agnar Sverrisson is the chef owner of one Michelin starred, Texture in London.

Agnar Sverrisson is an exciting, young Icelandic chef born in the capital Reykjavik. A change in family circumstances at a young age led him from living in a mansion with a swimming pool on the outskirts of Reykjavik to sharing a room with his four other brothers. 

Texture

texture bar

34 Portman St, Marylebone, London W1H 7BY


Restaurant manager: Gregory Vergnes
Head Chef: Agnar Sverrisson
Head Sommelier: Cyrielle Mascaro

Opening times: Sun and Mon closed; Tues 6-10:30pm; Weds – Fri lunch 12-2:30pm; Weds Fri dinner 6-10:30pm

Instagram: @texturerestaurant

Twitter: @texturelondon

Facebook: Texture Restaurant and Champagne bar

Career to date

His mother used to cook fresh boiled fish six days a week and an obsession was thus born. After being expelled from a number of schools, he finally found his place doing a catering and cooking course, and has made his dreams of running a restaurant in London come true; he now even has four.

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Agnar Sverrisson

Agnar started cooking in 1992 in Iceland, not knowing that he wanted to become a chef but rather just trying it out. He soon realised that making it as a chef was for him, and to do so moving to London was essential.

He was a big fan of Marco Pierre White, inspired by his book White Heat, and tried to get a job at his restaurant The Oak Room, but started instead at Swiss chef Anton Mosimann's eponymously named Club. He then moved on to work at Pied de Terre with Tom Aikens where he stayed for eight months, before returning to Iceland. In 1998, Agnar was appointed head chef at Reykjavík’s Grill Room, his first time in this position.

He came back to London and worked at Pétrus under Marcus Wareing, followed by a year in Luxembourg with Léa Linster, the only female winner of the Bocuse D'or competition.

A call from the executive chef of Le Manoir Aux Quat'Saisons, Raymond Blanc’s restaurant in Oxfordshire, offered him the role of sous chef at La Gousse D'Ail, Oxford. This restaurant closed the day before he was supposed to fly in and start, however the apparent adversity proved to be a stroke of luck as he was instead hired as junior sous chef at Le Manior.

Texture

He arrived in 2001 and stayed for over five years. After two-and-a-half years the executive chef proposed to him the role of head chef and, although he wanted to leave, he accepted the promotion, realising the great opportunity that was on offer.

Whilst working at Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, Agnar met former head sommelier, Xavier Rousset, the youngest Master Sommelier in the world aged only 23. Over the course of two years they planned a business venture and in 2007 they launched Texture, a restaurant in Central London.

Texture

Texture offers modern European food with Scandinavian influences. Agnar's menu typically combines locally sourced British produce with ingredients from his native Iceland, as he explains: ‘what I try to do with my cooking is to use Scandinavian ingredients, for example a lot of ingredients from Iceland, and try to cook it in a modern way.’ He likes to use lots of raw fresh vegetable juices to create clean flavoured sauces, and the wine list encompasses over 100 types of champagne.

Accolades at Texture

They hit the headlines on opening when Agnar announced that the dishes served would not contain butter or cream, an attempt to eliminate the heavy feeling after eating. They have since attracted much praise and won many awards, including a Michelin star in 2010, The Independent New Restaurant of the Year and Best Newcomer in the Caterer & Hotelkeeper Catey Awards.

Texture offers a variety of eating options from a la carte and lunch set menus to a Scandinavian fish tasting menu, where you will find ceviche, Norwegian crab, Icelandic cod and skyr – a traditional Icelandic dessert similar to yoghurt.
In 2010 Agnar opened 28°-50° Wine Workshop & Kitchen, in Holborn. A second branch followed in 2012 with a third a year later.

Videos with Agnar Sverrisson:

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th January 2018

1 Michelin Star Chefs: Agnar Sverrisson, chef owner, Texture