Adejoke Bagare: First black chef to be starred by Michelin in the UK and second in the world

Adejoke Bagare: First black chef to be starred by Michelin in the UK and second in the world

With dishes inspired by West African cuisine, Adejoke “Joke” Bakare, chef and owner of Chisuru RestaurantHe recently became the first black chef to win Michelin star in the United Kingdom, and second in the world. Loved by many chefs around the world, a star indicates that the restaurant is elegant and worth visiting.

Growing up in Nigeria, Adejoke used to cook for his family and about 20 years ago, he pursued his passion for cooking and moved to the UK to study microbiology.

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The restaurant opened as a temporary pop-up in 2020 and has since become one of the best restaurants in London. Jay Rayner, a journalist for The Guardian, described the menu as “warm, vigorous and full of flavour”. Less than six months after opening its permanent headquarters in the city centre, Chisuru is already one of the most talked about things in London.

Photo: Harriet Langford

In an interview with CNN last week, Bakare explained the origin of the name Chisuru in the Hausa language of the West African region where he grew up: “the silence that descends on the table when the meal arrives”. According to him, “It represents the love and passion for food and ingredients that is essential to me as a chef.”

“I've always dreamed of having my own restaurant. I always thought it would be great to have a Michelin star, so I was really excited to get one this week,” he says.

He explains that his mother and father are Yoruba and Igbo, so the concept of 'Nigerian food' does not exist. “It's a huge country with many different food traditions, all of which predate the nation-states in the region,” he says.

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Photo: Harriet Langford

Among her favorite dishes, the chef highlighted Eguru. A watermelon seed cake with pumpkin seed pesto served with Scottish pepper sauce. “These are items that many customers haven't tried and it's not like anyone else's food,” he explains.

Read the full interview here!

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About the Author: Morton Obrien

"Reader. Infuriatingly humble travel enthusiast. Extreme food scholar. Writer. Communicator."

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