1 Michelin Star Chefs: JP McMahon, chef patron, Aniar

The Staff Canteen

JP McMahon is chef patron at the one Michelin starred, Aniar in Galway.

JP McMahon started cooking from the age of 15. In being self-taught JP learnt a lot from books and working in various restaurants. In 2008 he came across the opportunity to open his very own restaurant and over the years since he has had the chance to work in many prestigious kitchens.


Aniar Cover Photo

53 Lower Dominick Street, Galway, Ireland

Telephone: +353 91 535 947

Email: [email protected]

Website: http://aniarrestaurant.ie

Chef Patron: JP McMahon

Opening Hours: Tuesday to Thursday 6pm to 9.30pm; Friday and Saturday 5.30pm to 9.30pm

Instagram: @aniarrestaurant

Twitter: @aniargalway

Facebook: Aniar Restaurant


He’s spent time with Albert Adria at Tickets as well as Clare Smyth at restaurant Gordon Ramsay. Although JP is the only chef in the family his three brothers work in front of house at restaurants, two of which have helped out in his own restaurants.

Potato and whey
Potato and whey

Food Style

His restaurant Aniar is led very much by the ingredients. By looking at what’s in season and focusing on three or four elements exclusively JP is able to get the maximum flavour out of them. An interesting method used in his kitchen is that of fermentation.

There is a popular fermented barley dish on the menu, the garnish in which changes a lot however the barley is fermented and cooked so it has a sour taste. Along-side this JP McMahon is a big fan of foraging but as a lot of foraged stuff is hyper seasonal you can only get your hands on it for a short period of time. One of his most favoured products is seaweed, within the menu at Aniar they have four different dishes featuring seaweed in four different ways.

What the guides say

Michelin Guide

Restaurant James Sommerin, Michelin star restaurants, Michelin Guide 2018

Some dishes use the seaweed raw, dried and even pickled. Another interesting way they have incorporated seaweed is in the desert menu where a seaweed ice cream is featured.

Teaching/Food on the Edge

Although JP is often still found cooking he does enjoy the practical side of the business including public speaking and teaching up and coming chefs. His restaurant Aniar has a small boutique cookery school that takes on six students taking place on a Monday evening when the restaurant is closed. The cookery school was originally aimed at those who thought they may not be good enough to learn in a Michelin star kitchen.

The idea behind it was to teach others new skills and change people’s perceptions. JP McMahon is also the Symposium Director of Food On The Edge a two-day Food Symposium featuring top international chefs from all over. The conference was set up as a none profit conference to make good food accessible for all. The aim of the symposium is to challenge your perspective and connection on food. It is also to excite and inspire action through debate and dialogue.

Videos with JP McMahon:


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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th January 2018

1 Michelin Star Chefs: JP McMahon, chef patron, Aniar