Five minutes with… Michael Carr

Brummell talks to the new head chef at Sky Garden’s Fenchurch Restaurant about butter, cooking with a view and Jürgen Klopp

Food and Drink 20 Oct 2020

Fenchurch Restaurant at the Sky Garden
Fenchurch boasts striking views across the City of London

To produce an award-winning team who are passionate, driven and capable of competing with the best out there. It’s all about pushing the boundaries and growing together, and I believe we have the structure to do so, taking our culinary offering to the next level. I am already incredibly proud of what we have achieved so far, creating a sophisticated yet laidback menu from a team of incredibly skilled chefs and making Fenchurch known for its high standard of food, not just the breath-taking views.

What is it like cooking at a restaurant with such an incredible view?

Cooking in this very beautiful restaurant is something I will cherish and never take for granted. Everyone I meet is always envious and says, ‘Wow, I can’t believe you can call that place your work’. The views over London are something I will never forget.

Fenchurch Restaurant
Fenchurch Restaurant

Can you let us know what to expect from the new menus you have developed for Fenchurch?

At the moment, our focus is on the produce and making each dish as delicious as possible. Our menus bring clean, fresh and vibrant dishes with innovative flavour combinations to the table, keeping in line with Fenchurch’s ethos of delivering contemporary modern British dishes driven by flavour and seasonal ingredients. We will continue to let the ingredients speak for themselves, using the freshest seasonal produce, whilst constantly improving and upping our game. We have plenty to come and I can’t wait to show London what we can do.

Who is your role model and how have they influenced you in your work? 
My role model is my dad. He’s the hardest working man I know but has taught me that hard work in itself isn’t enough, you need to fully submerge yourself into tasks and really give it everything you’ve got to get the best out of yourself.

What ingredient can you not live without and why?

I’m going to go for butter. Fat is flavour and for me it’s my essential ingredient to bring out the best flavours in a dish.

Michael Carr, head chef of Fenchurch Restaurant
Michael Carr, head chef of Fenchurch Restaurant

What is your favourite restaurant in London?

To be honest, with everything going on in 2020, I haven’t had time to eat out recently as so much has changed. I am planning on visiting my friend Tom [Booton] at The Grill at The Dorchester and I am sure it will be up there as one of the best – his cooking is ace!

What do you like to do on a day off? 

When I get time out of the kitchen, I enjoy going for a run and clearing my head. I was doing a lot of exercise during lockdown but it’s tough now that I’m back at work. I always try to run on a day off though as it definitely helps me unwind.

Apart from food, what are your biggest passions?

As I said, I love exercise and I love being outdoors. I am a bit of thrill seeker and am currently trying to get my motorbike licence. I also love surfing and being by the sea. Being in London, I don’t get to enjoy it as much as I would like to, so I’m currently planning my next adventure to fulfil my passion.

If you could invite anyone, living or dead, to a dinner party, who would it be and why?

Jürgen Klopp! What a man, I’m a huge Liverpool supporter and I think he is a fantastic leader and talisman, so dinner with him would be fascinating for me. I am sure he’s got some great stories to tell and he would probably drink me under the table in the process, so it would be one hell of a party. 

Fenchurch Restaurant is open at Sky Garden and is offering its own Eat Out To Help out discount throughout October of £10 per person on food and soft drinks. Available Wednesday to Thursday dinner and Friday to Sunday lunch only.