NEW VIDEO: "I love the challenges that we face every day as chefs"

Alex South

Alex South



Matt Abé is the next LAFONT featured chef, he talks to The Staff Canteen about three Michelin-starred Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, working with celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay, and the pressure of running one of the world's most famous restaurants.

Since becoming Chef Patron of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in September 2020, Matt has continued to carry the baton of delivering sensational fine dining at one of the world’s most respected restaurants.

Enticing diners with elegant modern French cuisine, packed with only the finest seasonal ingredients, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay’s ability to spotlessly showcase both classic and modern techniques has led to a raft of awards and accolades, including three Michelin stars, four AA rosettes, and critical acclaim from the Michelin Guide, Harden’s Guide, Good Food Guide year after year after year.

Armed with 17 front of house staff and 20 chefs in the kitchen, including Head Chef Kim Ratcharoen, Matt delivers exceptional quality across 10 services a week, with the restaurant open Tuesday to Sunday for lunch and dinner.


Matt’s career in hospitality started in Australia, where he spent four and a half years working at a restaurant in Sydney called Aria under a chef called Matt Moran.

From there he moved to Melbourne at the age of twenty-one where he worked for a chef called Shannon Bennett at a restaurant called Vue de Monde as a chef de partie.

In 2003, Matt moved to the UK and got a job as chef de partie at Gordon Ramsay at Claridge’s through Matt Moran, who was a good friend of Gordon’s.

He was there for approximately two and a half years before moving to Restaurant Gordon Ramsay in 2009 where he started as a chef de partie.


Talking about how his role at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay has changed, from a chef de partie to chef patron, Matt said: "It's more having understood the responsibility and feel more confident and comfortable within the restaurant, allowing myself to grow and give the team more time to offer people more mentorship, guidance and now allows me to have more creativity with the amazing team that I've got behind me."

For Matt as chef patron, developing and motivating to ensure standards remain the highest possible can is essential in his role.

Highlighting some of the new developments Matt’s looking to bring in for his team, he revealed: "We've recently acquired a space just down the road which is going to allow us to expand our staff facilities which will provide us a place to sit down have our have our family meal every day and give her an environment for people to work in. I'm hopefully also going to be looking to grow a library from there, so the chefs and the front of house in their time when they have their break, they've got plenty of time to sit down and read something and gain a little bit of inspiration."


In September, whilst celebrating 22 years of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, Gordon thanked the team for continually driving success over the years, announcing that Matt would be taking over as the restaurant’s chef patron.


For anyone who knows both Matt and Gordon this decision didn’t come as a surprise as the pair’s relationship and respect for each has been the base for how the restaurant has developed over the years.

Describing his relationship with Gordon, Matt said "Gordon and I have got a fantastic relationship. It's a mentorship for me, as well as a friendship, and I'm very fortunate having worked for Gordon now for 16 years, we've built up this relationship over that period of time and there's a lot of trust there."

Matt added: "I'm given the freedom to do as I see fit with Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, whilst following the DNA and the integrity of the of the history in the past."


For Matt and his team, the principle of taking the best product, cooking it, and preparing it in the best way is what runs throughout Restaurant Gordon Ramsay.

Describing the restaurant’s cuisine in more detail, Matt explained: "The food style here at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay is classical at heart, it's classically rooted with French cuisine, but I think more today it's more of a modern European, modern worldly style of food. We have influence from all over the world, from my travels, from everyone's backgrounds."

"There's a little bit of a Japanese influence in certain bits of technique and ingredients and products we use, but as I said everything comes back to that classical root of French cuisine."

Visiting the restaurant, diners can expect Matt’s signature dishes including Dover sole Grenobloise, served with brassicas and a warm tartare sabayon, a classical dish with modern interpretations, as well as Matt’s Pecan praline parfait, served with Pedro Ximénez and cocoa nib ice cream.

There's no tricks, there's no show, there's no theatre. It's honest high-quality products, cooked and prepared masterfully by the restaurant’s fearless kitchen team.



Mastering one’s craft and being at the top of your game is something that comes with experience and a wide source of knowledge and inspiration. For Matt, this is no different, with the chef revealing the sources of his inspiration.

"What inspires me as a chef? Everything. From past memories, my own experiences, dining out, other cookbooks, travel. I think in a modern world that we live in now it's very easy for us to gain inspiration from all over the world. We hold our phone in our hand, we use social media, we can see things and we can have this instant access to know what every restaurant across the world is doing," he explained.

Matt stitches together different ideas from chefs and restaurants globally whilst adding his own soul and style to create unique showstopping creations.

Matt added: "It's not about copying other people ideas it's about using little parts of things and taking inspiration from them. It allows us to actually have this access to a broader perspective of different produce. If you're looking at something from the other side of the world, they're in summer, we're in winter, it's starting to get my cogs ticking for the season ahead."

Revealing his favourite restaurants, Matt listed Adam Byatt’s Trinity, Tomos Parry’s Brat and François O'Neill’s Maison François as three of his favourite restaurants to dine at in London.


With the number of awards and accolades Restaurant Gordon Ramsay has picked up over the years, it’s understandable why the restaurant is viewed as one of the best in the world.


However, with that comes a great deal of stress and pressure for Matt and his team.

Talking through the management of the restaurant and its associated stresses in more detail, Matt explained: "The pressure is immense, but something I thrive upon. It's why I wake up every morning to go and enjoy it and I do. I love the buzz of the kitchen, I love the buzz of the restaurant, no two services are ever the same, and I love the challenges that we face every day as chefs."

For Matt, the enjoyment of taking a raw product and then transforming it into something unique and completely original, is what excites him about his role as chef patron.

"Taking a raw product, and having to work with it and get the best out of it every time, I think the best thing for me is it's how that grows, and how that changes. You end up with this situation where I don't actually think about the pressure as such. I just come to work every day and get to enjoy to do what I want to do, and it's a privilege to have that position," he revealed.

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Alex South

Alex South

Editor 6th April 2023

NEW VIDEO: "I love the challenges that we face every day as chefs"