Tom is a Michelin star chef, whose Tom Aikens Restaurant in Chelsea has earned many accolades. He has also worked privately, for Lord Lloyd Webber. He is one of the most exciting chefs in the UK today.
Tom Aikens was born in Norwich in 1970 into a family of wine merchants. The Aikens family had a converted barn in the Auvergne region of France where the chef would spend his early summers. The Aikens’ family regularly travelled around France where he was exposed to fine regional cuisine.
Aikens started his cooking career as a commis chef at the Mirabelle in Eastbourne. He continued his career as a commis chef at the Cavalier’s with David Cavalier and then moved to London’s Capital Hotel under Michelin-starred head chef Philip Britten as a commis chef. He was working as chef de partie at Pierre Koffmann’s La Tante Claire in London when the restaurant won its third Michelin star before becoming sous chef at Pied à Terre in 1993 under Richard Neat.
He left London to work under Joël Robuchon in Paris and Gerard Boyer in Reims before returning to Pied à Terre as head chef in 1996, where he held onto the two Michelin stars earned by his predecessor, Richard Neat. In doing so, he became the youngest British chef to be awarded two Michelin stars.
Aikens spent a year as head chef at La Tante Claire before opening Tom Aikens in April 2003 in partnership with his then wife, Laura Vanninen, who handled the front of the house. The restaurant won a Michelin star in January 2004 and three stars in the Egon Ronay Guide for 2005. In 2005, it was named as the eighth best restaurant in the world in Restaurant’s Top 50.
In April 2010, Aikens opened “Tom’s Terrace” at Somerset House in London.
Tom has worked with some of the greatest chefs in world, including Pierre Koffman at La Tante Claire and Joël Robuchon in Paris. He has also worked privately, for Lord Lloyd Webber, and has published two books.
Aikens was one of the four Iron Chefs in Iron Chef UK on Channel 4. He has also appeared on Market Kitchen on UK Good Food Channel.
Product Endorsements & Advertising
His other great passion is cycling, entering such races as the Marmotte and the Etape de Tour up Mount Ventoux and completing the Marathon des Sables: 6 marathons running across the Sahara in 5 days, in support of his chosen charities.