Have you had the chance to experience a real Gastropub yet? Visit The Alchemist on Pl. Piłsudskiego 3 (thealchemist.pl) to experience the cooking of English Head Chef Ed Shellard…
(TEXT SUPPLIED BY THE ALCHEMIST)
As a young Chef, Ed studied gastronomy in Oxford where he developed his passion for the best produce the English countryside had to offer and at the same time fell in love with the concept of gastropubs. Moving to London, he began building on his culinary style, embracing the freedom that gastropub menus offered. Ed’s grandmother grew up in Saigon, and his mother in France, giving him access from a young age to a wealth of cooking styles, flavours and techniques – which are all visible today in the irresistible dishes on his gastropub menu.
So, why Warsaw? Ed loves passionate people. Foodies are his people. “Warsaw is the hungriest European city I have come across,” says Ed, “it’s full off fantastic people who have a burning love and want for new tastes, new flavours and new dining experiences.” This made the Polish capital the ideal location for him to create The Alchemist Gastropub and share his unique culinary style & authentic menu with people who matter. It appears he really has made an impression on Warsaw’s foodie community this past year.
And why the name The Alchemist? When you begin to talk about food with Ed, you can see that food is his life. He lives and breathes gastronomy. He explains that in ancient times people believed that Pagan Alchemists could use magic to transform basic materials and elements into objects of great value, such as bronze into gold. When you watch Ed working in the semi-open kitchens of this gastropub, you sense the dedication and passion in his work, and his cooking truly does transform basic ingredients into magical, wonderful dishes. It all makes sense.
His kitchen team are producing some of the very best traditional gastropub dishes out there, yet with an undercurrent of sophistication to their work. The menu is constructed on a land, sea and air philosophy, and Ed uses his magic to give us traditional recipes transformed using modern techniques and technology. From the land, wholesome and traditional pub meat dishes such as British Roast Lamb with winter roasted vegetables catch the eye and couldn’t be more fitting for this time of year.
From the air, specialties such as his digitally cold-smoked-in-house Peri Peri Chicken or Confit Duck with Kumquat glaze on smoked potato puree may stimulate your appetite. And from the sea: a chef from the British Isles specializes in, of course, authentic Posh Fish & Chips, though do not miss out on complex light bites such as Szechuan pepper infused Salmon Gravlax which all pair perfectly with a light IPA from the pubs eight tap ‘Self-Service-Craft-Beer-wall’ which is the only one in Central Europe and a must try experience.
Somehow, when dining at The Alchemist, Ed makes it look easy. He has created a perfect balance of top quality service mixed with stunning interior design that captures elements of vintage Old English pubs. His passion and attention to detail is evident throughout in the antique pub furniture imported from the UK, the vintage cutlery sourced from British flea-markets and stunning Churchill crockery used throughout. Bartenders mix and shake craft cocktails behind the bar whilst groups of sophisticated young ladies pour-their-own Prosecco from the beer-wall and gentlemen explore the craft beer selection with their traditional English pint glasses in hand.
The atmosphere is as authentic as you could get, perfectly bringing together locals, regulars and visitors as they relish in the community feeling that The Alchemist Gastropub creates. Ed has brought British Gastropub culture to Warsaw, and it’s become an absolute must try!