The Seven Sins of Adam Handling - Chef Patron at The Frog
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The Seven Sins of Adam Handling

Chef Patron at The Frog
Adam Handling
Adam Handling’s culinary journey started at Gleneagles where he was the first ever trainee chef, before he went on to become Fairmont’s youngest ever Head Chef, culminating in winning Scottish Young Chef of the Year 2011.

Adam has since been awarded Scottish Chef of the Year 2015, Newcomer Restaurant of the Year in the Food and Travel Reader Awards 2015, as well as the British Culinary Federation’s Chef of the Year 2014.

In 2014, he opened ‘Adam Handling at Caxton' in Caxton Street SW1, which was awarded a coveted three rosettes from the AA. He was the youngest person to be tipped by the Caterer magazine as one of the ‘30 under 30 to watch’ in the 2013 Acorn Awards.

In June 2016, Adam opened his first independent venture, The Frog E1 in Ely’s Yard, Spitalfields. The restaurant offers a relaxed, urban environment in which to enjoy Adam’s distinctive cooking style - combining technical savvy with the best possible produce and a lightly theatrical touch.
 
A highly accomplished chef, Adam Handling brings his love of Asian flavours and techniques - particularly Japanese - to his kitchen. His beautifully presented dishes start with careful sourcing of top quality, seasonal ingredients, prepared in a number of different, creative ways to enhance their inherent properties and deliver real depth of flavour and harmony.

The Frog E1 has been subject to critical acclaim, having recently been listed in Bloomberg’s roundup of London’s 11 best restaurants of 2016, Hot Dinners’ best new London restaurants to open in 2016, The Caterer’s top 10 restaurant openings of 2016, The Handbook’s pick of the best new venues to open in 2016, The London Economic’s best London restaurant openings of 2016 and Square Meal’s list of 2016’s best new London restaurants.

Published to coincide with the launch of his first restaurant, his first cook book Smile or Get Out of the Kitchen contains 87 recipes that reflect Adam’s ethos of exploring and combining taste profiles and flavours, to create balanced, harmonious dishes with a real ‘wow’ factor.

Olivia by Adam Handling was launched in 2015 - a range of world-class olive oils and sherry vinegar for the hospitality sector. With his characteristic and meticulous attention to detail Handling has worked with the award-winning winery and oil mill VINOLEA in Cordoba, Spain, to produce a unique taste of the Mediterranean to offer to restaurants here in the UK.
 
Wrath - What makes you angry about the hospitality industry?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
Front of house, as a profession, isn’t as well-respected as it should be. In Europe, it’s thought of as a highly-skilled profession and so it should be, but it’s not in the UK for some reason. They work just as hard as the chefs and people behind the scenes, and they’re the ones providing the face-to-face service that can make or break a restaurant. I want to see the profession get the respect and recognition it deserves.
 
Greed - If all your food fantasies came true what would be on your Plate?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
Pan-seared foie gras, followed by pave of Wagyu smothered in sauce Diane, covered in truffles. I don’t think there would be any room for dessert!
 
Sloth - What do you do to unwind?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
This probably isn’t too surprising but I love to eat out. I love trying new restaurants but I also have a few firm favourites too. Sunday is my day off, and every week I go to Holborn Dining Room to eat good food, drink good wine, and be well looked after.
 
Pride - What are you most proud of?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
My kitchen staff retention rate is 100%, which is almost unheard of in the hospitality industry. I know how stressful working in a kitchen and restaurant can be, so it’s really important for me to try and create the best atmosphere possible for my team to work in. It’s great for me and the team to see this reflected in things like The Caterer’s Best Places to Work in Hospitality 2017, where we were listed ninth. I think that to this day, I’m still the youngest person ever to be listed in the Acorn Awards “30 under 30 to watch”, so I’m still quite proud of that one! Aside from that, I’d have to say that in general, the standard of the food and quality experience The Frog has become known for is something I’m proud of every day.
 
Lust - Is there anything that you are still lusting to achieve?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
I’m really proud of everything I’ve achieved so far but I’m still relatively young so there’s still quite a lot I want to achieve. I’d like to win a Catey Award and 2 Michelin stars - I think that’s enough for now!
 
Envy - who are you most envious of?
Adam Handling Seven Sins
Any chef will tell you that life in the kitchen is busy and stressful - it’s exhausting and you work really anti-social hours, so I’d probably say that I’m jealous of people that have more time, and less stress. I’d like to have more time for my friends and family, and I’d like more time to “switch off”.
 
Gluttony - have you ever over indulged? 
Adam Handling Seven Sins
Yes! As I said, I don’t get a lot of time to treat myself so when I do, I go all out. It is an age-old saying, but I do believe in the phrase “work hard, play hard” - otherwise, what’s the point? Always spoil yourself.
 
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