- TV Presenter
- Professional Chef and Food Expert
A hugely popular and influential figure on the UK culinary circuit, John Torode is best known as the straight-talking co-presenter and judge of BBC's MasterChef along with Gregg Wallace and for his well-established restaurant at the heart of London's meat market - Smiths of Smithfield.
Australian by birth, John is credited as one of the main players in introducing Australasian food to the UK in the mid-1990s. In 1992 he joined the Conran Group, starting out at Pont de La Tour before becoming Sous Chef at Quaglinos. Two years later in 1995 John opened Mezzo in Soho as Head Chef (at the time one of Europe's largest restaurants).
He opened Smiths of Smithfield in 2000. The four floor Grade II listed restaurant, private dining room and café, located in the heart of Smithfield Market, continues to be a roaring success and a firm fixture on both the restaurant and bar scenes. John is now leading the team behind Smiths towards the next venture, another multi-storey operation, The Luxe at Spitalfield Market, due to open Autumn 2008.
John is passionate about sourcing the Best Of British produce, particularly and enthusiastically meat where he has long been a champion of Rare Breeds. In his quest to source the very best produce for Smiths, he has built strong relationships with many small farmers & butchers throughout the UK and aims to share his knowledge through his widely distributed "Fine Meat List". John is currently working on a new cookbook (his third), namely John Torode's Beef, Veal and other bovine matters due for publishing late in 2008. In this meaty book, John not only gives us every which way to cook with beef but also gives the history and importance of great and rare breeds, butcher's recommended cuts and true head to tail eating.
John became a familiar face as the resident chef on ITV1's This Morning back in 1996 with Richard and Judy, a role in which he continued for four years. Since 2004 John and Gregg Wallace have paired up on our screens handing out feedback, criticism and support to hundreds of hopefuls aiming to be crowned MasterChef (or indeed Celebrity MasterChef). He is a frequent panellist on The Wright Stuff for Five, a regular guest host on Saturday Kitchen for BBC1 and a popular guest on shows such as The One Show, Loose Women and BBC Breakfast, as well as numerous radio programmes.
A well-known food writer, John regularly contributes to Olive and BBC Good Food magazine, as well as supplying numerous articles for the Guardian, Mail and Observer newspapers.
John is a very popular choice for corporate events, including culinary demonstrations, informative talks and Q&A sessions. He was a member of the judging panel for the Glenfiddich Food & Drink Awards and appears twice-yearly at the BBC Good Food Show in London and Birmingham.
- MasterChef - BBC2/UKTV
- Celebrity MasterChef - BBC1/UKTV
- Saturday Kitchen - BBC1
- The Wright Stuff - Five
- The One Show - BBC1
- Loose Women - ITV1
- BBC Breakfast - BBC1
- This Morning with Richard and Judy - ITV1