Be BRAGARD - Gareth Packham
Chef Gareth had a passion for creativity from an early age and found himself in a kitchen with many ideas but no clue.
His first fundamental role is the most important so far as it made him the character he is today, working alongside Paul Beckley in The French restaurant Manchester. During this time, He was learning a tremendous sense of being humble and knowing one's route.
Following Manchester, he headed to London on a rainy morning with pants that did not fit.
Due to the rain, Gareth arrived late for his trial shift at The Savoy Grill. Luckily, he was offered a position in one of the iconic kitchens. He worked his way up the ladder from commis to sous chef. Before moving to Hong Kong he spent time working France and Spain.
His time in Hong Kong has been his outstanding achievement: opening two Gordon Ramsay restaurants and overseeing three of them, and now heading up ALTO Bar and Grill (Tom Dixon) with S&S Hospitality.
Chef Gareth summarises himself as a very lucky, hard-working chef.
Brief introduction of your restaurant/ working place
We offer dinner at a sky-high steak house with an Asian influence, lavish cocktails, fantastic decor and a unique view of our surrounding Hong Kong. We pride ourselves on finding the perfect cuts of meat, fish, etc. Working we straightforward ingredients but showcasing the dishes
How do you describe your overall cooking philosophy?
Try everything, never be accepting and respect the products.
Name the three kitchen tools you can’t do without?
Bragard chef jacket, Josper grill and pencil
Which would you rather do: wash dishes, clean the bathroom, or vacuum the house?
Wash the dishes hands down
What is your or family favourite vacation?
Anywhere that includes my family
Would you cook at home on your day off?
Absolutely as much as possible
What are your comfort foods?
Fish and chips, pies, Sunday roast with all the trimming, Mixed Kebab
What chefs do you follow on social media? (Or admire their work and career in general? Explain why?
I follow a vast world amount of chefs. For our industry, it is all about growth, and seeing what others are doing makes that grow
Do you scream in your private life as much as you do in the kitchen?
I don’t yell, and I believe a good set-up and guild lines always lead to smooth and organised services. So there are never any surprises.
What would you like to say to the young people who have just started their career in the culinary field?
Imagine where you want to be in life in the future. Our industry has no judgment for setbacks. Just work hard, and you will get there. Always remember there is no rush to the finish line. Just enjoy the trail.
Say if your kid(s) was also working in the same industry, would you like to work with him/her in the same kitchen?
Absolutely industry is about knowledge and passing it down, and we try to do this daily with our children. So why not have them work with you and teach our kids all aspects of life.
Chef Gareth Packam from ALTO Bar & Grill
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