Charlotte Gillespie-Williams - An Introduction Blog

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 9th August 2011

After being hassled like crazy, by this mad woman on Twitter to feature her - If I'm honest, I'd hoped that she'd go away, but she didn't.  I really felt that anyone with that amount of determination should be taken notice of, so we did and boy, am I glad we did.

On The Staff Canteen, in her own words, is Charlotte's blog  A Rising Star...Good luck from Us, Charlotte.

My name is Charlotte Gillespie Williams, aged 19, I started cooking at the tender age of 14 when I went into a kitchen on work experience which was Purnells' Restaurant in the centre of Birmingham. I loved the buzz and the vibe and also the banter within the kitchen, between Chef and the team it was like no other work sector I had seen before on television or read about in magazines. Chef (Glynn Purnell) is a very big influence on my career, more because it was the first kitchen I's worked in, and I just fell in love with the whole ''kitchen vibe'' and Purnells in general Shortly after my work experience with Glynn I got a job pot washing at a local golf club every day my mum would drive me up the long drive after school to do my 4 hour shift and I would just listen to the kitchen talk, as I washed the pots and pans, because I showed interest they got doing some mise en place and the rest is history as they say. I attended Birmingham College of Food at the age of 16 and studied Professional Cookery Level 1 and 2. I wasn't very academic and just wanted to get back in the kitchen. College was a very big learning curve for myself, it was good in some ways like the amazing kitchens I got to work in but personally I don't think you need qualifications to be in this industry. It teaches you the basics then you just have to get out there and do it!! I then entered a competition called Britain's Best Dish which was shown on ITV in the afternoon. I met John Burton Race and went to work for him after this in his restaurant. I cooked a Rhubarb Crumble Trifle with a Bay Leaf custard,  the judges really liked it! It was a long audition process I went to a beautiful hotel with my parents in the city centre. I was only 16! I was quite confident in front of the camera but nervous waiting for the call! When I got the call that I was in the show it was crazy, when you think out of all the people that entered they picked me. Taking an all expenses paid trip to London by ITV with my dad it was an amazing couple of days for us both. The studio was pretty small with crazy cameras and everyone running around after for you,  which I just couldn't get used too! After the show as I mentioned I went to Devon to work for JBR under his head chef James Barber at The New Angel, I still keep in contact with them both, I was there for 3 months as I was only 16 it was a very big change but a fantastic experience too which I really enjoyed! I currently work at a hotel in Birmingham City Centre as a commis Chef. My goal is to be a fantastic female chef in the UK and show the industry what I have to offer. My drive and passion makes me want to visit local farms, see local produce and gain lots of knowledge while I am still young. I have allot of inspirations as a chef, one that inspires me the most would be Glynn Purnell, I think his style of food is fantastic and he is also from the same area as me. I also think Ferran Adria is absolutely phenomenal, and I would also like to have been young and in the industry when Marco had Harveys! I hope you've enjoyed my introduction blog -- Charlotte Gillespie-Williams Follow Charlotte on Twitter - @Modest_Charles Charlotte has truly had an amazing life and career so far. Why not join our fabulous site for free and have the opportunity to connect with other industry professionals, swap recipes and access our excellent database of chef knives and chef clothes suppliers? If you would like to follow in Charlotte’s footsteps, the first thing you should do is become a member of our site. We not only provide you with the latest chef jobs around the country like sous chef jobs but also feature industry suppliers and events. Join the conversation now!
The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 9th August 2011

Charlotte Gillespie-Williams - An Introduction Blog