Founders & Friends - Dana and Sami talk Ottolenghi

"It takes hard work, a lot of hard work but if you want to achieve it, it's there, you can just grab it.

Ottolenghi are an institution, and changed the way we eat vegetables in the UK.

Not only did they start at a time arguably much harder to launch a restaurant but, 17 years on, they have proven staying power and owe part of this success to karma. 

Normally shy and not one to step into the limelight, (in his own words I 'nagged and nagged'  him to do this interview) it is our absolute delight to share this rare and intimate discussion with co-founder and head-chef of Ottolenghi, Sami Tamimi.

"Yotam likes to come to my house, open the cupboards and admire how neat, tidy and colour coordinated everything is.  

Seemingly an overnight success, we unravel how Ottolenghi came about, how success grows through love, not greed, why Sami doesn’t envy Yotam and how a positive attitude helps in work and life.

"When I got to be a head chef, I said to myself, I want to be nice to people- I don't want to be throwing pots and pans at them. 

So go on, grab some dates, plonk some cardamom pods into a cup of English Breakfast tea, relax and enjoy!

(P.S. Apologies for the odd bird squawking in the background, we were on a roof and a very beautiful rooftop – that of Second Home where we are proudly based.)



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