Revelations: Ben Marks, head chef, Perilla, Newington Green, London

26 March 2018 by
Revelations: Ben Marks, head chef, Perilla, Newington Green, London

What was your first job in catering? I worked as a pot washer in a small restaurant near my parents' house, and I quickly fell in love with the kitchen

What is your favourite drink? A cold Peroni

What is your favourite cuisine? At the moment it's Turkish. Simple, good meat cooked over charcoal, with chopped salad and chilli sauce

Which ingredient do you hate the most?

Are there any ingredients that you refuse to cook with? So far, chocolate. I get abused for it every day. I just haven't worked with it enough

Which person in catering have you most admired? Martyn Nail (Claridge's) and Phil Howard (Elystan Street), I owe them both so much

Which person gave you the greatest inspiration? There are so many. I've been really lucky to work for, and with, some incredible chefs. Sometimes it's the cooks next to you, not above, who inspire you the most

Which is your favourite restaurant? I think the Ledbury in London is the best restaurant in the country, but I would say my favourite is Xi'an Impression in London's Highbury. They serve the best noodles I've ever eaten and it's BYOB!

What's your favourite hotel? Definitely Claridge's. I started my career there and can't think of anywhere I'd rather spend a night. It's a magical hotel full of incredible people

If not yourself, who would you rather have been? Thierry Henry - what a suave dude

Who would play you in a film about your life? Channing Tatum, obviously

What is your favourite prepared product? Bottarga - it's cured grey mullet fish roe

Who would be in your fantasy brigade? I couldn't be happier with the boys we've got now, but I might add Aaron Potter from Trinity in Clapham - just in case we ever want to put a turned mushroom on the menu

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