Anthony Shone: new head chef at Zibibbo
27 May 2008
Rising star, Anthony Shone: new head chef and part-owner at Zibibbo
Fresh from the kitchens of Le Gavroche in London, Nelson born Anthony Shone, 27, has re-joined the Zibibbo crew in Wellington as head chef and part owner, energised with new ideas from one of the world’s top chefs.
At just 15, with food already a passion, Anthony aimed high. He was determined to work for a Michelin-starred chef and arrived, as soon as he could, aged 22, on Adam Newell’s Zibibbo doorstep, where he worked full-time while studying for his chef qualifications at Weltec in Wellington.
When he’d achieved that, in 2006 he received a letter. This was not just any ordinary letter. It was one from the legendary Chef Michel Roux Junior offering him a year’s placement at his famous two Michelin-starred restaurant Le Gavroche in Mayfair, London. The unexpected news he puts down to Adam’s contact with his former boss in London.
“Wow, I’m at the Le Gavroche,” were his first thoughts on his first day, but he then grasped the opportunity of working under executive head chef Michel Roux Junior and, of course, his father Chef Albert Roux with both hands. “I loved it, but it was hard,” he says, adding that it was stressful working with a team of 25 in the kitchen. Forty to fifty other young chefs passed through the kitchen during his time there.
From demi chef-de-partie, he rose quickly to chef de partie in charge of the meat section and was the fastest young chef to achieve control of one of the two favoured positions in the Le Gavroche kitchen. He puts this down to Adam Newell’s preparation and systems in the Zibibbo kitchen where being consistent is number one priority.
After Le Gavroche he “relaxed” for six months during the America’s Cup, by cooking on one of the private yachts based in Valencia, Spain, and sailing round the Mediterranean.
As a result of his journey overseas, Anthony says his mental approach to cooking has changed and he has received a good grounding in the basics. It involves being professional about everything you do. Reaching a level of perfection and doing each dish consistently each time.
Now he’s back and settled into the Zibibbo kitchen.
He says he knows what he wants more than ever in the kitchen now and is a hard task master. “But, the guys working for me can see I’m passionate about it and I enjoy passing on what I’ve learned.”
“I share a passion for food with Adam and we also share a vision of what Zibibbo should be.”
He’s aiming now at a Michelin Star – or two- of his own sometime in the future.
Chef/owner Adam Newell will be keeping an eye on things while pursuing other restaurant opportunities, along with further developing and managing the new Zibibbo product line of dips, tapas and sauces for retail.