Insider's Guide

Insider’s Guide with Tom Aikens

9th May 2024

As a chef, Tom needs no introduction. He holds the distinction of being the youngest British chef to receive two Michelin Stars at the age of just 26. His illustrious career has seen him working under culinary giants such as Philip Britten, Pierre Koffman, and Robuchon in Paris, as well as Gérard Boyer in Reims and Pied-à-Terre in London, among others.

Today, his culinary prowess shines at his flagship restaurant, Muse, in London, where he holds a Michelin star. He also happens to spend a lot of time in the Cotswolds and has kindly shared his tips for the area.

How long you have visited and or lived in the Cotswolds?

I previously lived in the Cotswolds back in 2000 for several years whilst helping Carole Bamford develop Daylesford Organic, assisting with the set up and launch of the farmshop.

Since Autumn 2019 I have rented a cottage in the Oxfordshire area, where I come every weekend with my family, which serves as a nice break away from London city life.

My favourite spot is…

One of my favourite locations is my cottage, which is located on a working farm. On many weekends in the summer, we have lots of BBQ’s situated on the top of a hill that overlooks the rolling hills of Oxfordshire with stunning views. It’s the perfect place to spend an entire day.

My favourite place to escape in nature is…

I love to forage in and around the fields and forests of Swalcliffe Lea.

The best place to go early in the morning is…

Quince & Clover in Great Tew have lovely coffee and freshly baked pastries that I enjoy most weekends.

Something only locals know is…

As a weekend local, I know all the best secret spots to forage with lots of amazing wild berries and crab apples that I make jams with for my restaurant Muse in London.

My cultural fix is…

Generally, walking my dog with the kids around the typically English landscape with views for days, the woodlands and charming little villages. Blenheim Palace is always a great day out to explore, we find something new each time we visit.

My foodie go-to is…

Chandlers Arms in Epwell is really nice for a romantic dinner.

My nighttime escape is…

The Double Red Duke in Bampton is a super cosy place to relax and unwind with great food and service.

A misconception about the Cotswolds would be…

People tend to assume it’s very far to travel to from London, when it’s not. It roughly takes me just under 2 hours, which I think is really reasonable, to be able to step foot in something so completely different to London.

Three words to describe the Cotswolds…

Peaceful, rural, relaxing.

We are delighted to welcome our long time friend Tom to host an exclusive supper club at The Wild Rabbit. Join us for a three-course tasting experience, to launch Château Léoube’s 2023 vintage rosé.

Imagery of Tom is kindly shared by Tom, you can follow him on Instagram here.

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