Meet Ashley Tinoco, the Executive Head Chef at The Chesterfield Mayfair. Known for his innovative approach and dedication to sustainable cooking, Ashley shares insights on everything from sourcing ingredients to the latest food trends.

Can you tell us about the process of sourcing and testing ingredients for your dishes?

Rigorous testing is key. Every dish goes through several iterations to find the perfect combination of flavours and textures. We strive to source produce locally whenever possible and prioritise seasonal ingredients. This approach ensures freshness and supports local farmers.

How do you approach menu innovation at The Chesterfield?

Staying ahead of trends is crucial. I love experimenting with new techniques and aim to use every part of every ingredient. For example, with cauliflower, we'll use the stalks, leaves, and florets, ensuring nothing goes to waste.

What new trends are you excited about in the culinary world?

There's a movement towards going back to basics, which I find exciting. It's about keeping dishes light and simple rather than overly complicated. I'm also enthusiastic about the increasing use of pulses, sustainable cooking practices, and the rise of vegan cuisine.

The Chesterfield's signature dish, Dover sole

Are there any chefs that inspire you?

Absolutely. Eric Ripert, the esteemed French Michelin Star Chef, is a significant influence. I admire the simplicity and detail of his dishes. Given my passion for seafood, his expertise in that area resonates with me.

What are some standout dishes on your menu?

My personal favourites are the hand-dived scallops and grilled tuna. These dishes embody simplicity, attention to detail, and freshness, which are the hallmarks of my cooking style.

What's one item you can't live without in the kitchen?

My Japanese knives. They are indispensable tools in my culinary arsenal.

Indulge in a steak cooked to perfection in Butler's Restaurant 

Have you learned any new skills or techniques recently?

Yes, I recently mastered the technique of sous vide followed by barbecuing. It’s a game-changer in terms of achieving perfect textures and flavours.

What's your go-to 15-minute meal?

Instant ramen with veggies. It’s quick, delicious, and comforting.

Can you share a funny moment from your career?

Once, when we were short-staffed, I asked the General Manager of the hotel I was working at (not The Chesterfield) to keep an eye on the chicken while I was plating up for an event. When I returned, the chicken was burnt to a crisp! 

If you weren’t a chef, what would you be doing?

I would have joined the army. It's another path I was passionate about.

Who has been a significant influence in your life?

My mother. She’s been a tremendous influence on my cooking and life.

Butler's Restaurant is bathed in natural light, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere

What's your go-to ingredient?

Anything seafood. It’s versatile and offers endless possibilities in the kitchen.

How does the heritage of The Chesterfield Mayfair influence your cooking?

In a world full of foams and gels, the hotel’s heritage reminds me of the value of classic elegance. I focus on creating simple dishes that elevate high-quality ingredients.

What’s the most valuable lesson you’ve learned as a chef?

Learning never stops. There’s always something new to discover in the culinary world.

Ashley’s dedication to his craft and innovative approach truly make dining at The Chesterfield Mayfair a unique and unforgettable experience. Stay tuned for more stories and behind-the-scenes looks at our esteemed hotel.