Quintessentially British cuisine with tantalising twists, say hello to George’s Great British Kitchen. It’s hard to categorise ‘British’ food, because ours is a culture which has been influenced by many other countries from around the world. But, things like fish and chips, or shepherd’s pie will always be British food. George’s takes our well loved classics and twists them with international influences. Since opening it’s first Leeds venue on the Headrow in 2017, George’s has quickly become a firm favourite with everyone looking for something fresh and cheerful. Its decor is taken straight from the seaside, and the team makes you feel at home from the moment you walk in the door. It’s menu is simply delightful, and the pulsing atmosphere means that you’re never bored. But that also means you can’t sit down with the chef and ask questions, something we consider a terrible shame! To help counteract that, we sat down with George’s Development Chef Duncan Poyser and asked all the questions you wish you could. So, without further ado. Here’s what he had to say… Meet Duncan – Georges Great British Kitchen Q – Where are you originally from? A – Stoke-On-Trent Q – When did you first become interested in cooking? A – I suppose when I was about 10, helping mum at home just with the basics. I was always amazed by how a meal was created from a few raw ingredients. Q – Who was your biggest inspiration? A – As a man, my dad for his pure work ethic without him I wouldn’t be who I am now. Professionally Ian McAndrew, Nico Ladenis and Philip Britten all of whom I worked for, for their sheer dedication to their craft and to taste. Q – What changes have you seen, if any, in the way the restaurant world has changed? ie have peoples tastes changed, do people expect more nowadays etc..? A – With the rise of cookery programmes on TV, more food magazines on the shelves of newsagents has influenced supermarkets to stock more and more exotic ingredients as the market has demanded, coupled with social media that I think today we have a more informed and educated audience which demand higher standards and a wider choice from restaurants. Today whether we like it or not, with social media everyone’s a restaurant critic. What used to take a week, month or a year to hear about is now at our fingertips instantaneously or if not, by the end of the day! Q – What has been your biggest success to date? A – In 36 years of being in the industry I’ve been fortunate to have had many, stars, rosettes, acorn award, chef of the year, restaurant of the year but biggest and continuing success to date is being instrumental in creating Georges Great British Kitchen, it a new independent brand that along with Nick and Andrew I’m really proud and passionate of. Q – What’s the must try dish on your menu? A – The heritage of the company is fish and chips and so besides the companies signature batter I created a few flavours so our Cod in Smoked paprika Batter with Red wine-honey vinegar and Spiced mayonnaise is a must try, bit of a twist on a tapas I ate in Barcelona which was fried cod with honey and vinegar on patatas bravas. Q – What would be your tip for upcoming chefs? A – Learn your craft, work with the best, don’t hop skip and jump from job to job and eat out as much as you can afford in the best you can afford and always remember we are there to please and look after our audience not be the ‘great I am’! The greatest restaurants on all levels give the best all round experience from the moment a guest walks through the door to the moment they leave. Something youngsters need to understand. Q – What are the 3 main components to running a successful restaurant? A – Really good consistent food, great attentive friendly service, great atmosphere and ambience all working in harmony together. Easy eh! Q – What do you hope people think when they’ve dined with you? A – I hope they’ve eaten some great food with loads of flavour that they’re not going to have eaten elsewhere, had some great drinks, great service and most of all relaxed, enjoyed themselves and wish to return. Q – Finally, If you could summarise, what do you believe good cooking is all about? A – Great ingredients, flavour driven served consistently. A kitchen stands or falls on its basics and if you’ve not got great ingredients you’ll fall at the first hurdle, then to create dishes with maximum harmonious flavour, so when you take your first mouth full your eyes open and continue to excite until the last. And then to consistently deliver that time and again.