We caught up with Guillaume Gillan, head chef of the amazing Canary Wharf Restaurant Bokan.
1. GULLIAUME, CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE BOKAN CONCEPT TO OUR READERS WHO MIGHT NOT HAVE HAD THE PLEASURE OF POPPING DOWN YET?
BOKAN is an award winning 2 AA Rosette dockside beacon for artisanal food & drink made using a mixture of local, ancient and adopted British ingredients. We have crafted a menu inspired by rich European cultural cuisines that have flowed along the Thames since ancient times. Our meticulous selection of British local produce is the most important factor for us when creating a menu at Bokan. Example: Rhug Estate, specialises in organic meat. Example dishes include: Slow cooked Rhug Estate lamb shoulder, saffron panisse, plums, chickpeas and fresh cobnuts or Welsh fallow deer saddle baked in fig leaves, Cornish beetroot, figs chutney
2. IT’S GOT AMAZING REVIEWS, AND A 2 AA ROSSETE BEHIND ITS NAME. YOU MUST HAVE A PRETTY IMPRESSIVE CV! WHAT RESTAURANTS HAVE YOU WORKED AT BEFORE ENDING UP THERE?
Alain Ducasse, The Grill in Monaco and Alain Ducasse, Rivea in London. Also L’Atelier, Joël Robuchon in London.
3. SO YOU WERE OBVIOUSLY DESTINED TO BE A TOP CHEF. WHERE DID THIS LOVE OF COOKING COME FROM?
Both of my grandad’s have been an inspiration and the reason why I am a Chef today. One was a baker and the other one was just incredibly passionate about cooking. Although the latter was not a wealthy man he always found a way to cook dishes with so much taste, simplicity and love that are very close to my heart, e.g. Petit Farcy (stuffed vegetables with minced meat)
4. SO FAR, THE RESTAURANT IS JUST BASED IN CANARY WHARF. ARE WE LIKELY TO BE SEEING IT POPPING UP ANYWHERE ELSE IN LONDON IN THE FUTURE?
At the moment we have not heard about another BOKAN popping up, but who knows? With all the businesses that Accor is acquiring as well as a big focus on developing the food and beverage offering of their brands, it is very possible that there might be another BOKAN in London or the world.
5. WHEN COOKING FOR FAMILY AND FRIENDS, WHERE’S YOUR GO TO LONDON JOINT TO PICK UP INGREDIENTS?
My favourite place to shop for Food is Turnham Green Terrace in Chiswick with premium local business such as Natoora, Covent Garden Fishmongers, Bayley & Sage + Lemon and Limes.
6. WHAT DOES YOUR PERFECT LAZY SUNDAY IN LONDON LOOK LIKE?
I love to try out new restaurants. My top 3 wish list is: Sketch, Bibendum and Rogan.