2 Michelin Star Chefs: Tom Kerridge, The Hand and Flowers

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 29th September 2017

Tom Kerridge is chef owner of two Michelin-starred The Hand and Flowers in Marlow.

From rags to riches is what applies to chef Tom Kerridge. From dropping out of school and not knowing what to do, to leading a successful pub with two Michelin stars, Tom's journey was a turbulent one.

The Hand and Flowers

two Michelin-starred The Hand and Flowers in Marlow

126 West Street

Tel: +44 (0)1628 482 277
Email: contact@thehandandflowers.co.uk

Opening Times

Mon - Sat Lunch: 12.00 - 14.45
Mon - Sat Dinner: 18.30 - 21.45
Sun Lunch: 12.00 - 15.15

Head chef: Aaron Muliss

General Manager: Lourdes Dooley

Twitter: @cheftomkerridge

Instagram: @cheftomkerridge

Facebook: Hand and Flowers

Tom Kerridge's biography

His parents divorced when he was 11 and from then on his mother has brought him and his younger brother Sam up alone. His father died when he was 19, but by then they weren’t close anymore, he says. His mother worked two jobs to make enough money for the family, but it was still short. She was an idol for him: “My work ethic and attitude to life comes from her.”

Tom Kerridge Pork tenderloin

Tenderloin of Wiltshire pork from

the menu at The Hand and Flowers

Tom dropped out of school when he was 15, because it “didn’t really suit [him]”. He was “hopeless with numbers, all right with words but not spelling”, so his mother put him in a theater group to keep him off the streets. Tom used to cook for his younger brother, when they were home alone, having learned cooking from his mother. But back then he didn’t know that this was the profession he wanted to pursue.

How Tom Kerridge got into the hospitality industry

Tom attended catering colege in Cheltenham, he then moved to London and worked with Philip Britton, Steven Bull and Gary Rhodes. He then moved to Norwich to work at the Michelin-starred Adlards. In 2005 he and his wife Beth purchased the Hand & Flowers pub in Marlow. Tom wanted to “open the sort of place that [he]’d go to on [his] day off.” Tom knows that “if you want something you have to make it happen – no one is going to do it for you.” Their pub has a comfortable atmosphere combined with high quality food.

The Hand and Flowers and accolades

In 2006 The Hand and Flowers was awarded its first Michelin star, in 2011 its second and Tom and his team have retained them ever since. The pub is not what you expect of a Michelin starred restaurant. It is not a posh restaurant; it is a pub with reasonable prices, but extraordinary food. The Hand & Flowers is the first and only pub in Britain to hold two Michelin stars. It is also the first pub that was recognised as UK’s best restaurant at the 2013 National Restaurant Awards. He describes the food he cooks as “Modern British adding new touches and ideas to classic dishes.”

They also hold four rosettes in the AA Restaurant Guide 2017 and Tom received the coveted AA Chefs’ Chef Award in the 2014 guide.

What the guides say...

Michelin Guide UK                         

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AA Restaurant Guide 

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hand and flowers

Great British Menu

Tom starred in two series of the “Great British Menu”, which enabled him to start his own series “Proper Pub Food”, in which he shows how to cook British pub classics. A book with the same title contains recipes he cooks in his much-celebrated pub, which became a big bestseller.

Tom Kerridge

glazed omelette of

smoked haddock and Parmesan

from the menu at The Hand and Flowers

Tom Kerridge books and other restaurants

His latest book, Dopamine Diet,  was number one in the book charts in 2017. It’s his fourth book, all of which have been hand written by Tom, he says he’s ‘rubbish at typing’ but also believes it makes it more personal to him.

Tom now has award winning pub The Coach, also in Marlow, and in 2017 he will be opening for the first time in London at The Rib Room at the five-star Jumeirah Carlton Tower. 

Videos by Tom Kerridge:

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 29th September 2017

2 Michelin Star Chefs: Tom Kerridge, The Hand and Flowers