When I visited Aiden Byrne at The Church Green on behalf of the Lymm.com team to do an exclusive interview here’s what went on...
Question: Where did your interest in cooking first stem from?
Aiden says he can remember wanting to be a chef from the age of 14. As a youngster, Aiden’s role model was his 2 year older cousin in who he copied everything he did. From what he wore, to what his hobbies were and even down to the subjects he took in school. So when his cousin chose to do Catering at school, so did Aiden. This was when Aiden discovered his natural ability and true passion for cooking. From then on, he said, he was hooked.
Question: What do you enjoy most about your job?
Witnessing the development of a dish is what Aiden most takes pleasure in within his work as a Chef. He told me that watching the whole process of the raw ingredients evolve into something truly special is very satisfying and what he enjoys the most. The opportunity to work with an array of meats and produce is also something he values in his job. Discovering which cuts of meat are best suited for different aspects of a dish is a very fulfilling process and allows him to expand his knowledge as a chef. Aiden also truly appreciates having the opportunity to play both roles of a Chef and a Restauranteur. He loves pleasing people so witnessing customers continually enjoying his food and the hospitality of his restaurant is a very rewarding part of his job.
Question: What would you say were your greatest accomplishments to date?
Clearly the proud father, the birth of his first child just 5 weeks ago was what Aiden claims to be his most rewarding achievement to date. Aside from being a father, finally having his own establishment is one of his greatest highlights of his career. Aiden was the youngest chef to ever be rewarded a Michelin Star at the tender age of 22 when he held the position of Head Chef at Adlard’s restaurant in 1995. His massively successful book ‘Made in Great Britain’ proved to a hit selling 15,000 copies. And finally, Aiden is truly grateful of all the television work he’s had the opportunity to partake in through his career.
Question: Some of Aiden’s dishes have unusual combinations of ingredients that you would never think of putting together. How do you come up with such recipes?
The experience Aiden has gained has enabled him to detect what ingredients work well and marry together. Being able to apply these skills into his recipes is very rewarding when a dish is created. Aiden told me how his willingness to take risks with flavours and ingredients are what really sets his recipes apart from the rest.
Question: What future career goals do you have?
Above all, Aiden would love to earn himself another Michelin Star, and the first for his restaurant in Lymm, The Church Green. The star is awarded for the whole dining experience therefore includes both the level of the food and the service. Once a star is awarded it stays with the establishment, therefore the star would stay with The Church Green. Aiden is currently in the process of writing his second book after the success of his first. He would also like to open another restaurant which will feature a predominantly fine dining menu.
Question: And finally, what is your favourite dish?
He’s a fan of strong flavours so enjoys globe artichokes and truffles. But Aiden truly believes “you can’t beat a Sunday Roast”, with wing rib or sirloin being his favourite choice for the cuts of the meat.
View details on Aiden Byrne's TV appearance on the The Great British Menu.