The Lockhart’s Brad McDonald: meet the chef

Born in small-town Mississippi, chef Brad McDonald grew up cooking wild game with his father and baking with his mother. Here we ask Brad all about his menu, most-used cookbooks, quick dinner ideas, and what he'd spend a tenner on...

Having worked under the acclaimed southern US chef John Currence at The City Grocery, The Lockhart’s Brad McDonald went on to take leading roles at Alain Ducasse, Per Se and Noma. In January 2014, following stints co-owning and operating three restaurants in Brooklyn, New York, he re-launched The Lockhart in London’s Marylebone, putting a refined spin on southern American cooking.


meet the chef: brad mcdonald

The best thing on the menu is… there might be a riot if we ever took the cornbread off the menu, but my favorite item is the dirty rice.

In my fridge there’s always eggs, Cheddar, yoghurt, orange juice and milk (or, at work, pork, lard, pickles, Cheddar and Anson Mills grits)

My most-used cookbook is The Taste of Country Cooking by Edna Lewis. Classic Southern recipes and it’s a beautiful read which reminds me to keep cooking simply.

My favourite 15-minute supper to make at home is carbonara; my kids love slurping up noodles.

A food trend I see coming this way is Mexican food. It needs to make a better appearance in London, giving up the idea that a burrito is the nexus of Latino food culture, and adopting real methods of production.

A fellow chef I admire is Jonathan Benno, the chef I worked under at Per Se. He is the epitome of a hard-working individual who has no care for fame, only quality in his work.  There’s hardly a day in the kitchen where what he taught me or what I gleaned from him isn’t exhibited.

Never trust a chef who shows up late. Tardiness is for losers.

I love eating out at any friends’ restaurant. I like places that are about creating a community and keeping them close.  We live flanked by Brawn, The Clove Club, Lyle’s, Taberna do Mercado, and St John Bread and Wine. 

If you gave me a tenner I‘d spend it on a great coffee.

Brad’s recommendations for getting an American-style food fix in London:

Shake Shack for a burger

Bubbledogs for a ballpark frank (albeit a dressed-up one)

Mission for Californian wines

Balthazar (yes, it’s a French brasserie, but it feels like NYC)

Mast Brothers for chocolate

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