Tom Brown

Tom Brown

In 2012, Tom made the most important jump in his career ­– he joined Nathan as chef de partie at the St Enodoc Hotel, before eventually working his way up to head chef. It was with Nathan that Tom really came into his stride, not only learning everything there is to know about cooking fish and seafood, but also contributing his own ideas.

In 2016, Tom was appointed head chef of Nathan’s London outpost, Outlaw’s at The Capital. Entering a Michelin-starred kitchen in London is never easy, but Tom rose to the occasion and maintained the quality with ease. ‘I tried not to think about the star, as it just leads to too much worry,’ he says. ‘All you can do is the absolute best and what you know works. The recipes we prepared at The Capital were the same as in Nathan’s two-star restaurant in Cornwall and the produce was the same, but there was this responsibility to keep the culinary heritage of The Capital going. People like Eric Chavot, Tom Kerridge, Gary Rhodes and Brian Turner worked there previously, so sometimes I felt like I’d sneaked into an A-list party.’

Tom’s next big break came in 2017 when he appeared on Great British Menu, winning the South West heats to make it to the final. Surprisingly, it wasn’t his fish course that stood out but his dessert, proving that there was more to Tom’s cooking than seafood. Later on in that same year, Tom decided to set out on his own, leaving Outlaw’s at The Capital to open his own restaurant in Hackney Wick called Cornerstone, which opened to rapturous acclaim in April 2018. Tom's cooking at Cornerstone still focuses around fish and seafood, but the real foundation of his food is freshness and originality, and he applies that to meat and vegetarian dishes too. His potted shrimp crumpet with fennel and gherkin dish was arguably the UK's dish of the year in 2018, and dishes like lemon sole, oyster, smoked leeks and tarragon and cured monkfish, ginger and spring onion dressing, and yogurt ensured that tables at Cornerstone were hard to come by for the whole year. He was hotly tipped for a Michelin star, which was deservedly awarded to Cornerstone in 2021. Tom is undoubtedly one of the brightest young stars in the industry and we suspect despite his successes, he's only getting started.

Three things you should know

Being mentored by Nathan Outlaw means Tom excels at cooking fish and seafood, but he enjoys cooking meat, vegetable and sweet dishes just as much.

Tom has fantastic relationships with suppliers and producers in Cornwall, working with them to ensure he has access to the very best ingredients.

Tom’s cooking style is light, simple and balanced, allowing the ingredients to speak for themselves.