Until last December, I’d always lived in Shoreditch in London. Moving to Bermondsey was my first foray south of the Thames. When I bought this place there were lots of new brick partitions and a giant jacuzzi in the middle of one of the rooms. I gutted it, opening it up into an open-plan kitchen, dining and living space. I took all the false walls back to bare brick, pulled up the cracked resin floor and replaced it with the floorboards and tiles you see here now.
The wooden piece of furniture behind me is a French fridge of sorts from the 19th century. My restaurant refrigeration guy found it in a flea market in Paris. The central compartment would originally have held a big block of ice, which would chill the rest of the cabinet … now it’s my negroni cupboard. We’ve converted it into compartmentalised refrigeration with lots of cubby holes for, variously, glassware, spirits, dairy and condiments.
I found the concrete blocks that form the base of the kitchen island at Retrouvius, a brilliant architectural salvage shop on the Harrow Road. I think they must have formed the pillars of a midcentury building. They were for my Bankside restaurant, but there were some left over, so I used them at home.
The lobster pot and matching claw spoons look to be midcentury, but in fact date back to the late 1800s. I think they’re actually crayfish, and would’ve been used for seafood salads.
The brown tagine came from a Moroccan shop on London’s Golborne Road. I’d not seen one quite in that shape before. I use it for baking bread – it creates a mini oven within the oven, and makes for fantastic sourdough.
The brass pestle and mortar came from Elizabeth David’s house. It was a present from a friend who’d bought it from an auction of her things. Hanging above it are two plates painted by Tracey Emin – they were also a gift, this time from an art dealer friend, Ivor Braka. He runs The Gunton Arms in Norfolk, which is covered in modern art.
I’m a mad collector of glug glug jugs. Whenever I see one I don’t have, I swipe it. This wild boar one is a favourite – I found it in a shop on Columbia Road the morning before I flew to Tuscany for a wild boar shooting trip. I had to have it.