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John Williams MBE celebrates ten years as the Executive Chef of The Ritz London

John Williams MBE
This June marks the ten year anniversary of John Williams MBE joining the team as executive chef of the extraordinary operation that is The Ritz London: The Ritz Restaurant, The Palm Court, The Rivoli Bar, Room Service and the private dining rooms at William Kent House at The Ritz.

To mark the occasion, the Ritz Restaurant menus will offer a selection of John’s favourite dishes from the past ten years and will include, Egg Fabergé, Butter Poached Lobster with Spiced Carrot Pureé, Poulet de Bresse en Vessie, and Saddle of Lamb Belle Epoque.  Each dish will be paired with an accompanying wine, selected by head sommelier Tobias Brauweiler.  

Born the son of a Tyneside fisherman, John Williams developed his passion for food at an early age.  Taught by his mother to cook, his culinary interests began with cookery classes at school and continued as he studied at South Shields College and later at Westminster College. John’s glittering career, which spans over 40 years, began at the Percy Arms Hotel Otterburn in 1974 and has taken him all the way to The Ritz via The Savoy, Claridge’s and The Berkeley.  

John oversees a kitchen brigade of nearly 70 chefs.  He considers himself a custodian, with a responsibility to protect and promote the culinary identity of The Ritz: ‘haute cuisine’, prepared with the finest seasonal ingredients and using methods inspired by Auguste Escoffier.  For John, this means “evolution not revolution”: using the most up-to-date knowledge and technology to create a cuisine entirely suitable for today’s diner, but also one which retains and strengthens the kitchen’s unique heritage, and is suited to the palatial settings of The Ritz London.  

John comments: “It is an honour to have spent ten years working in one of the world’s greatest hotels. I have been lucky enough to cook for high profile guests from royalty to rock stars, but what I love most is cooking for and connecting with people who understand and delight in food the way I do. I’ve seen trends come and go, but what I keep coming back to is a love of quality ingredients, carefully prepared - for me it is timeless. This, ultimately, is what we want to share with our guests, it’s the best story I could hope to tell them.”

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