Q&A with Terre à Terre head chef David Marrow

Terre à Terre is very proud to have been a part of some high flying chefs culinary journeys! Fourth and Church, Flour Pot Bakery and Smorl’s, as well as The Fat Duck, The Ledbury and The French Laundry are just a few of the local gems that Terre à Terre chefs have gone onto work.

Now running the kitchen is David Marrow, and we caught up with him to find out more about his chefing journey.

I can’t remember a time that I didn’t want to be a chef. I always feel as if food and chefing chose me really! I’ve had lots of influences throughout my life leading me here. Lots of inspirational chefs have guided me and I’ve always been interested in the provenance of products.

My dad was the overriding influence. He was in hospitality, and as a family, we would go and stay in the hotel. As a youngster it was so stimulating and exciting, all the hurley burley and professionalism opened my eyes. I used to watch TV cooking shows endlessly, but I think Marco Pierre White and his groundbreaking attitude was the chef who probably made me most focused to train classically and follow the dream.

Turning humble ingredients into something spectacular. I believe that as a chef I should to be able to turn any ingredients into something special.

Marco Pierre White for me was the first chef to break the mould and I love Rene Redzepi for pushing boundaries and taking vegetables seriously.

Terre a Terre has been challenging views about vegan, vegetarian and different diets for over 26 years. Amanda and Phil (owners) felt with great conviction, that meat-free and plant-based diets were the future. They wanted to make a change. I’m not keen on the word ‘passion’, but in this case, passion and belief remain at the very core of this business which continues to innovate and pioneer. Terre à Terre was also the first restaurant to have a totally organic wine list and, from day one, to have recycled and composted; both of which are close to my heart.

I would say either How’s Your Vada’ or ‘Funghi To Be With’. These are two very different dishes that I have developed. They are big, bold and have become very popular dishes with our customers. I have enjoyed the challenge of honing the flavours and hearing customer’s feedback. I am now looking forward to our next menu changes! 

I think we will/ are seeing a rise in plant-based, fermented food and drink. I think heritage grains and alternative sugars and oils tie in with the conscious eating and buying movement happening right now. I also think we will see more of simple North African food, food from the Philippines, alcohol-free drinks and food and more dishes experimenting with the cross over between sweet and savoury. Oh, and even more avocado…

See the listing for Terre a Terre Brighton