Chef Tom Aikens chooses Gloucester farm as supplier to Soho Farmhouse
Chef Tom Aikens has chosen Todenham Manor Farm in Gloucestershire as a supplier for his new kitchen at the Soho Farmhouse in Oxfordshire.
Owned by Irayne Paikin, the 800-acre farm rears rare breed Saddleback, Gloucester Old Spot and Middle White pigs, pedigree South Devon and Aberdeen Angus cattle and has its own on site butchery and local abattoir three miles away.
Cattle are brought into large barns during the winter, where they have ample space and straw beds, plus a home-grown mix of silage and cereals. The pigs live outdoors all year round so they can root and forage.
The farm's beef is hung for a minimum of 28 days, and the pork for five days. Its sausages are handmade using an award-winning in-house recipe.
Soho Farmhouse is the latest addition to the Soho House portfolio. The private members' club has 40 private cabins and an infinity pool, with its kitchen newly headed up by Aikens.
Aikens previously worked at Pierre Koffmann's La Tante Claire, and won two Michelin stars aged just 26, as head chef of Pied à Terre in London's Charlotte Street.
He has since opened several restaurants including his own eponymous site in central London in 2003, the brasserie Tom's Kitchen in 2006, and Tom's Terrace, Tom's Deli and a second Tom's Kitchen at the historic Somerset House in September 2009. He suffered tough times in 2008 after one restaurant closed, another was forced to re-evaluate its ventilation system, and his wider business went into administration, leaving considerable supplier debt.
However, he has since recovered to open a brasserie in Canary Wharf, and pursue other projects including Soho Farmhouse.
Paikin commented: "Tom is an outstanding chef and it's a true credit to be personally selected by him. We're proud to offer our animals the highest standards of living. We believe our appeal is that our standards are extremely high. We're looking forward to working closely with Tom and the rest of the team at Soho Farmhouse in the coming months."