1 Michelin Star Chefs: Angel Zapata Martin, executive chef, Barrafina

The Staff Canteen

Angel Zapata Martin is the executive chef at the one Michelin starred, Barrafina in Dean Street, London.

Angel was born in Barcelona and was inspired by his uncle’s love of cooking. He originally studied architecture but unable to ignore his calling, he left the course to study at the Hofmann School of Hospitality instead.

Barrafina Dean Street

Barrafina DeanStreet, Angel Zapata Martin, Michelin starred restaurants

26-27 Dean Street, W1D 3LL

Email: [email protected]

Tel: 020 7440 1456

Website: www.barrafina.co.uk/restaurants/dean-street

Executive chef: Angel Zapata Martin

General manager: Aurelija Sovaite 

Wine buyer: Rafa Martin

Facebook: Barrafina

Twitter: @barrafinadnst

Instagram: @barrafinalondon


After graduating, Angel worked at several casual dining restaurants in the local area, before he got his ‘big break’ working for Santi Santamaria at his restaurant, El Racó de Can Fabes, which held three Michelin stars at the time. It was here that Angel perfected his talent for Catalonian cuisine, and he was offered a job at Santi’s Ossiano restaurant in Dubai. He spent two years at Ossiano, before working briefly with Pierre Gagnaire.

Angel Barrafina J6A0651 low res
Angel Zapata Martin

He then spent a few years travelling in Latin America, before taking up the role of executive chef at the Barrafina restaurants.


Barrafina is a collection of three Spanish tapas bar/restaurants in London, owned by sibling restaurateurs Sam and Eddie Hart. They opened the first Barrafina site on Frith Street in London in 2007. In 2013, Barrafina Frith Street received its first star in the Michelin Guide 2014, under executive chef Nieves Barragán Mohacho. After the restaurant received such critical acclaim, the Hart brothers opened a second Barrafina in Adelaide Street, Covent Garden in 2014, and a third site in Drury Lane the following year.

All three restaurants have an open kitchen and a marble-topped bar. The menus feature a range of regional Spanish classic dishes, but each restaurant has a unique specials board that changes daily. The wine list features Spanish sherries, Cavas and wines.

The flagship Barrafina moved to its current Dean Street location in 2016, and they have retained their Michelin star to date.

In February 2017, Nieves announced that she would be leaving Barrafina to pursue opening her own restaurant, Sabor. Shortly after this, it was announced that Angel Zapata Martin would be appointed executive chef at the three Barrafina restaurants.

Barrafina DeanStreet 5545 low res
Barrafina Dean Street

Food Style

Angel has the utmost respect for traditional tapas and this is demonstrated by the menu at Barrafina. Whilst the main menu sticks to authentic recipes for dishes like Gambas al Ajillo and Morcilla Ibérica, Angel showcases his unique Catalonian style of cuisine on the daily specials board. He also encourages his chefs to develop dishes for the specials boards at each of their respective Barrafina restaurants.


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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 13th April 2018

1 Michelin Star Chefs: Angel Zapata Martin, executive chef, Barrafina