Robin Gill (The Dairy, Clapham)

The Dairy, Clapham

Having commenced his career at Dublin’s La Stampa Restaurant, Robin moved to London to work at Marco Pierre Whites’ legendary three Michelin star, The Oak Room.

He then went on to work at Ristorante Don Alfonso a two star Michelin restaurant and farm on the Italian Amalfi Coast, after which he returned to the UK to work at the eponymous Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons where he stayed there for several years and worked along side Raymond Blanc on many projects.

In February 2012 Robin embraced on a journey to get out and find new suppliers and visit some of the worlds best restaurants and partake in short stints in some of Europe’s top kitchens such as Noma in Copenhagen and Franzten in Stockholm.

After several months travelling the British Isles and Europe and blowing his life savings he stumbled across an old dilapidated building in Clapham Old Town London.  After some dubious negotiations and a few beers and the support of his wife Sarah, Robin took on the site without a penny to his name in November 2012. Five months later Robin and Sarah with the help of close friends scrubbed, sanded, painted, and threw blood sweat, tears and every penny into the place and Five months later opened the Doors on St Patricks Day 2013 The Dairy was born.

The Dairy is an exciting modern bistro with a product led menu aiming to create a countryside farm to table feel. There is a back to basics approach where the team prepare most of the basics in house, churning the butter, curing of meats, smoking fish and growing many herbs and vegetables in the rooftop garden and currently housing four bee hives creating a perfect permaculture not to mention some damn fine honey.

Within the first year The Dairy received numerous awards and accolades without the help of any PR and became a destination dinning spot, drawing customers from not just across the river to eat but nationally and internationally.

In November 2014 Robin and Sarah launched a second site, The Manor, a modern Bistro, which  follows The Dairy in creating an environment that is unpretentious and accessible for all! Robin placed his right hand men at the helm. Dean Parker headed up the Kitchen putting the focus on cooking inspiring seasonally led food and Daniel Joines as GM taking care of the dinning room  working with passionate wine producers that share the same philosophy.

In January 2015 Robin launched The Bloodshot supper club at The Dairy, a late night exclusive cooking event aimed at the hard working restaurant world as a place to go after hours which takes place at 1am the last Saturday night of every month and has become a platform for the next generation of cooks to flex there muscle and help promote their career. This event has received high amounts of national coverage and has received a cult following. There is now interest from all the major national television production companies.

February 2015 Robin and his talented team built a smoke house, bakery and Delicatessen adjacent to The Dairy which is as close to a farm house store as you could get making 90% of the products on site. Baking five types of artisan bread, seasonal jams, chutneys, preserves and a curing room creating a huge variety of charcuterie. The Delicatessen team also take care of the very popular Brunch menu served in The Dairy on Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 1pm.

In August 2015 Paradise Garage was launched in Bethnal Green bringing for the first time Robin and his Team to a new part of London which since its launch has been a huge hit with the locals and critics. The approach to Paradise Garage mirrors that of Dairy and Manor being extremely product focused first but creating a completely different menu and a slightly more traditional style in a very contemporary setting below a railway arch in East London.

Robin and his team have just launched Counter Culture “The Dairy’s Evil Little Brother” Situated right next door to The Dairy the aim is to capture the hustle and bustle of a San Sebastián pintxos bar but with Robin’s own inimitable cooking style. The room is centred around the kitchen with only 15 seats of which 6 are at the pass. A concise “snack” menu based around Robin’s obsessive approach to produce and food culture will be drawing from all of the techniques built up over Robin’s career – something that is already an essential part of the food offering at The Dairy, The Manor and Paradise Garage. There will be in house pickling, fermenting, ageing, curing and bottling through the seasons and inviting others to share recipes from their own cultures and add to an in house guest book to add to the ever-growing larder, with the intention to feature on the menu at some point creating a real life shared food culture. With only only 3 weeks in to opening Counter Culture has been awarded a coveted 5 Star review in Time Out London, quoting, “every so often a restaurant comes along that has me reaching for a sixth star”

All of Robins ventures have received numerous awards and recognition, most notably The Dairy reaching no 9 in The National Restaurant awards, reaching into the top 50 in the Good Food Guide, The Manor received no 1 best new opening in Time out and top ten Evening Standard and Robin personally received The 2016 Good Food Guide chef of The Year award, was named amongst OFM  top 50 and this year received chef of the year nominations for GQ magazine, and The London restaurant festival.

Robin has contributed to many publications with recipes and has just been given the opportunity to write for The independent on Sunday a series of weekly recipes and cooking tips.

Robin has contributed to many publications with recipes and has just been given the opportunity to write for The independent on Sunday a series of weekly recipes and cooking tips.


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