Member of the Month May 2021: Lewis de Haas

The  Staff Canteen

Here at The Staff Canteen, we feature a different member every month who we think deserves to be celebrated - this month’s winner is Lewis de Haas!

As thanks for being a regular contributor to The Staff Canteen, Lewis will receive a TSC mug and will be entered in our Member of the Year 2021 competition.

1.Current Place of Work, Position

Head Chef, The Shed, Notting Hill, London

2.What is your cooking style and what should people expect from the food on your menu?

A seasonal, sustainably conscious approach with absolute minimum waste on all produce. Varied, vibrant dishes with classical techniques.

Mozzarella, grilled peaches, tomatoes, chive oil

 

3.What is your favourite dish to cook and why?

I love the dishes where all of our team are involved and each bring certain elements into the development.

George and Beatriz make up our small kitchen team at the Shed and are both amazingly talented cooks - through our discussions about food and what is in season our dishes are organically created. A particular example of this recently - and one to which we receive great feedback in the restaurant - is a grilled asparagus dish with salted egg yolk, black garlic, camelina seeds and goat’s cheese. 

4.Name a food item/dish/ingredient that isn’t considered “cheffy” but that you love to eat?

Oysters with a Guinness is always a winner…

Plaice-head terrine, pickled fennel, dill oil

 

5. What do you like about The Staff Canteen app and website?

It’s great to see the interviews and features to get additional viewpoints and ideas surrounding the varying challenges we are facing at the moment - particularly the reopening of the industry and the challenges of recruitment. It’s also a great source of inspiration for dishes and ingredients.

6. What are your plans for the future?

To continue to work alongside charities, to help in the community and to invest back into the industry to make positive changes for the future. 

Pig-ear terrine, carrots and their tops

7 - After almost a year and a half since the offset of the pandemic, chefs are calling for changes to make their working life better. Do you think there is room for improvement? What would you like to see done differently in the industry?

There is always room for improvement. With the staff being the biggest asset to any business their welfare has to come first.

After the events of the last couple of years, people are naturally re-evaluating their roles in the industry and we have plenty more steps to take to address the work/life balance, the daily pressures that are faced and to make the industry more attractive to people to move in to.

The addition in recent years of hospitality channels such as the Staff Canteen, Countertalk and the Burnt Chef project have done wonders to give a platform for discussion, raising awareness and helping staff with the many issues that we face.

The amount of hours worked is always a factor and could be reduced, whether that is through businesses reviewing their trading hours or perhaps looking at a four-day week module, which some restaurants have already implemented with success. 

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The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 2nd June 2021

Member of the Month May 2021: Lewis de Haas