Chef Focus: Charlie Taylor, Aulis London

November 20, 2023

Charlie Taylor

We caught up with Charlie Taylor, Head chef of London’s Aulis by Simon Rogan. Charlie was previously at places such as The Ledbury and Kinobu in Kyoto, Japan. We tried to find out how Japanese flavours fit into his life and cooking.

Tell us about your restaurant, how long it’s been running and what the core concept is?

Aulis is a 12 seater chef table by @Simon Rogan serving 15 courses and has been open for 7 years with farm to table and sustainable British ingredients. I have been there for 3 years.

aulis london

How long have you been a chef and where did it all start?

I've been a chef for 17 years. It all started in Brighton (my home town) I started washing up the pots and pans when I was 14 and have just worked through the ranks working in various 1,2 and 3 star kitchens in London, New York and Kyoto.

What are the biggest trends in the industry this year?

I think the biggest trends in the industry this year is for sure taking inspiration from Japan and using Japanese ingredients.

chawanmushi

How is your relationship with SushiSushi and how long have you worked together?

Our company have been using @sushisushi for some years and I have had some good times in Tokyo with @sushi_stu

What Japanese products do you currently use in your menu?

Mirin, ponzu, dashi powder, kombu, katsuobushi

Aulis

If money were no object, what Japanese ingredient would you always have on the menu?

Fresh yuzu

How has using Japanese ingredients influenced your menu?

More from the time I spent working in Japan and understanding the simplest of ingredients be a hero in a dish and adding undertone flavours from Japanese seasonings.

If you could travel to Japan tomorrow just for food, what would be the top things you’d want to do or try?

A huge list of restaurants for sure, too many to say here, but snow crab is always delicious.

Why do you think Japan is so admired in the West for its cuisine?

I believe Japan is admired by western culture because it’s all so new and almost alien to what we know and love. The country pretty much shut its boarders for a long a time and I feel like exploring what they do at the very best is interesting to learn and appreciating what we can achieve from such simple ingredients and flavours. From the time I spent there, learning that less is more was the most important thing.

If a fish is fresh and beautiful, serve it raw, don’t fuck around with it too much like we can sometimes do in western cooking.

Sake or Beer?

Sake

Charlie Taylor






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