Chef Roy Brett has worked at some of the best restaurants in the UK including the Savoy Grill in London and Rick Stein’s Seafood Restaurant in Padstow, Cornwall.
Born and raised in Edinburgh, he opened his own restaurant, Ondine Oyster & Grill in 2009.
Here he talks to Scottish Field about his favourite summer ingredients and why keeping it simple is the way forward.
Tell us about your new summer menu
This summer will focus on day boat catches, cooked simply over coals. The day’s specials will be unknown until the fishing boats come in with their day’s catch, from here we can select the best produce and feature on our menu. The best way of featuring beautiful seasonal produce.
What seasonal produce are you most looking forward to using
The British Isles have an abundance of fantastic produce in summer. The obvious answer would be fish, but it’s important to highlight the quality of seasonal fruit and vegetables. I’m looking forward to seeing Sea Trout, as well as wild Salmon on the menu, which is a rarity. We have already started to introduce Isle of Wight Tomatoes to the menu, which work really well prepared simply with Pickled Fennel. We’re really looking forward to cooking over coals this summer, our own indoor BBQ. We have sourced some lovely cuts of beef from Peter Hannan from Northern Ireland, which we are excited to be serving this summer and cook beautifully on our Robata Grill.
What is your favourite ingredient to work with during the summer months
Summer squid. It’s more tender in summer and so versatile to cook with. I like to keep it really simple. Robata grilled and served with Isle of Wight Tomatoes, British Feta and a good splash of Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil. Delicious.
Where do you find inspiration for new dishes from
As I’ve gotten older, I feel more comfortable being able to cook food really simply. The less we touch produce and keep it in its state or form, you get more out of the flavour. I’m still inspired by the likes of Rick Stein, Jeremy Lee and Shaun Searley. Great cooks, keeping it simple!
What does Scottish produce mean to you
Scottish produce plays part in the bigger picture. We rely on the whole of the Britain and Ireland in order to keep our menu together all year round. Although I’m a proud Scot, I still hold the rest of the UK & Ireland in high regard.
What would be your desert island meal?
Without a doubt, a dozen Carlingford Oysters over ice. Paired with Ken Forrester’s FMC, Chenin Blanc.
Who would you most like to cook for and why?
It will always be my family first and the guests who come into the restaurant on a daily basis.
What’s in your fridge at home?
Kimchi & Rhubarb Yogurt.
What’s your favourite restaurant in Scotland at the moment?
Restaurant Andrew Fairlie.
What’s your favourite meal to cook at home?
Roast Chicken… and other stories.
Along with a rather delightful bottle of red from our restaurant manager Craig’s cellar.
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