18th May 2018
Restaurant investor Imbiba is featuring in a new BBC Two series, Million Pound Menu. The first episode of the six-part series aired on 17th May. The show is hosted by Fred Siriex, general manager of the Galvin At Windows restaurant at London Hilton Park Lane, who is known for his appearances on another television show – First Dates.
Million Pound Menu follows 12 restaurateurs on their search for major investment. Imbiba partner Darrel Connell appears on the judging panel alongside other renowned names in the sector, including Michelin-starred chef Atul Kochhar, MeatLiquor co-founder Scott Collins, Living Ventures chief executive Jeremy Roberts, and Fulham Shore chairman David Page.
A life-long advocate of nurturing the next generation, last night twice Michelin starred chef Atul Kochhar awarded two amateur female restauranteurs an investment to start their very own restaurant. Ruth Hansom and Emily Lambert launched their dining concept Epoch and were pitted against other restaurants to win the ultimate prize.
The aspiring restaurateurs have already become trailblazers in the hospitality industry; Hansom was named 2017 Young National Chef of the Year, the first female to ever win the accolade, while Lambert was The Ritz’s first ever female sommelier. This latest endeavour will further elevate their status in the industry and brings them one step closer to their ultimate goal, becoming London’s youngest female restaurateurs.
On the announcement, Atul Kochhar said, “I was blown away by Ruth and Emily’s creativity, flavour combinations and passion. Throughout the whole competition they stood out for all the right reasons, from their entirely British dining concept to their business acumen. These ladies are truly talented and I’m looking forward to mentoring them as they progress in the hospitality industry.”
Ruth Hanson and Emily Lambert commented, “A highlight of our careers to date, we’re delighted that Atul has chosen to work with us. It’s an incredibly exciting opportunity to drive forward our ideas and develop our culinary concepts in collaboration with Atul.”
Hanson and Lambert will be collaborating with chef Atul Kochhar at his Amersham restaurant Hawkyns on Wednesday 6th and Thursday 7th June.
Born in Jamshedpur, North East India, Atul Kochhar started his career in Delhi. Since 1994, he has been at the forefront of Indian fine-dining cuisine, achieving a Michelin Star in 2001. Atul Kochhar’s contemporary style and love of traditional cooking techniques led him to open his own restaurant ‘Benares,’ London in 2003 which won him a Michelin Star in 2007. Since then he has opened numerous successful, award-winning restaurants – Sindhu at The Compleat Angler in Marlow and on-board P&O cruises; Hawkyns at The Crown Inn, Amersham and Indian Essence in Petts Wood. Atul’s portfolio across the world includes the second Benares in Madrid, Rang Mahal at the JW Marriott Marquis Hotel Dubai.