Aaron London (Chef)

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Aaron London is an American chef and entrepreneur. He is the owner and head chef at Al's Place in San Francisco. [1]

Career

London got his first job working at an earring factory on the outskirts of a tiny town called Graton, California. He would stamp the backings with a "made in Thailand" stamp and then attach the earrings and sort them in boxes. [2]


His next job brought 14 year old London closer to finding his passion in food. This time he was working as a dishwasher at a Mexican food restaurant that was owned by his second grade teacher, Mario. He then went on to become a dishwasher at a fancier Greek restaurant where he also had a chance to perfect menial cooking tasks like wringing spinach and folding phyllo dough. [2]


At 16 years old London lied his way into an advanced cooking class at his local junior college, claiming to be a sous chef at a fancy restaurant. Even though he barely passed, it was during this class at a Meals on Wheels event where London had a serendipitous meeting with Dan Berman, chef-owner of Mixx. At 17 years old London became the sous chef at Mixx. [2] [3]


He then moved to NYC where he finished culinary school and worked at a chain of Michelin-starred restaurants, Daniel, L’ Astrance, Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Au Pied de Cochon and Ubuntu. He left Ubuntu to open up his own eatery, Al's Place. Al's Place is a 45 seat reverse-steakhouse, which means that it's vegetable focused and meats are treated as side dishes. [2] [6] [7] [8]

Awards

While working at Ubuntu, London became a two-time James Beard Foundation Award nominee for Rising Star Chef in 2011 and 2012. [5]


Al's Place topped Bon Appétit's Top Ten Best New Restaurants list in 2015. [4]

Personal Life

Aaron London's tattoos are inspired by 19th century naturalist, Ernst Haeckel. [9]

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