British chef, James Lowe, is one of the key players responsible for a ‘commonsense’ food revolution that is popping up all over London. Lowe’s early culinary experiences began a little over a decade ago working at notable restaurants, La Trompette, The Fat Duck, The River Café, and most recently, St. John Bread and Wine. After moving on from his four-year post as head chef at St John, Lowe and his colleague, Isaac McHale co-founded a collective of select, like-minded chefs called The Young Turks.
Without a restaurant or home base to call their own, Lowe and his colleagues commandeer local venues for short-term use and operate through a series of ‘pop-up’ events. This departure from industry standards has the group presenting a curtailed style of cuisine that is a retreat from all things pretentious. In an effort to encourage collaboration between young industry professionals, The Young Turks are looking to maintain a forward-thinking arena of chefs who share ideas and discourage secrecy for the betterment of all.
Working with the marginal climate of the UK and the diversity of seasons that come with it, Lowe focuses on a produce-driven approach to British cooking. With aspirations to open his own restaurant in East London this winter, Lowe seems content to continue to work with the challenges of ‘adaptive cooking’ in the pop-up medium, and keep the collaborative show on the road for the time being.