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Chef revelations: Nicola Melillo

22 June 2016
Chef revelations: Nicola Melillo

The head chef at Rudie's in Dalston, London shares his likes and dislikes

What was your best subject at school?

English language and food science

What was your first job?

Fixing tyres at 12 years old

What was your first job in catering?

Baking croissants in a bar at 13

What do you normally have for breakfast?

Hobnobs, espresso, peanut butter sandwich and smoothies

Which is your favourite restaurant?

Home (my mum is the best chef ever)

What is your favourite drink?

Amaretto sour (I know…)

What is your favourite food/cuisine?

Which ingredient do you hate the most?

Okra. When they get slimy… yuck!

What do you always carry with you?

My patience

Which person gave you the greatest inspiration?

Heston Blumenthal. Although I never worked with him I would trade a lot to spend a day in his kitchen.

Are there any foods/ingredients that you refuse to cook with?

Processed foods, foods with lots of E numbers… they should all be banned!

If you had not gone into catering, where do you think you would be now?

I would be working in public relations or advertising

Describe your ultimate nightmare

Running out of gas in the middle of service with a floor full of people

Tell us a secret…

I met my wife online

What irritates you most about the industry?

The many fake 'food experts' we have nowadays

When did you last eat a hamburger?

Last week. At Rudie's we offer a jerk burger - a noble burger, dare I say so myself

What's your favourite film?

Fight Club

What is your favourite prepared product?

Peanut butter (organic crunchy)

If you had more time, what would you do?

Get back into cheese manufacturing

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