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Great Chef Profile

Richard Ousby

Restaurant: The Stokehouse Website: http://stokehousebrisbane.com.au/
City: Brisbane Country: Australia


Richard Ousby
The Stoke House menu
The Stoke House dining
The Stoke House at night
The Stoke House by day

What are your favourite three places to eat in Australia?
My favorite 3 are Quay, Oscillate Wildly, Spice Temple.

Are you happy with the restaurant scene in Australia. What excites you?
I’m extremely happy with the growing and changing restaurant scene in Australia. Each year, I come across a greater number and diversity of restaurants – each drawing on different regional influences and global tastes. Personally, what excites me the most is that more and more, the gap between the producer and the chef is closing. It’s becoming so much easier for chefs with a passion for sustainability and great produce to get our hands on seasonal, fresh and sustainable produce.

What was is your most recent cook book purchase?
Maximum Flavour by Aki Kamozawa and H. Alexander Talbot. It’s got some really great recipes that are practical and work well, which is nice.

If you could fly tomorrow, eat anywhere at any restaurant, bistro or street food place in the world where would you go?
I’d jump straight on a plane and fly to Marrakesh, and wander the streets eating any of the flavoursome and delicious local dishes I could get my hands on!

What was the most epic eating moment for you personally?
On my honeymoon, we were staying in a small town in Southern Spain called Nigüelas. One morning I ventured to the local bakery to get our daily bread, and I noticed that they had some ripe, home grown tomatoes from the owners’ garden for sale. I bought a bag full! We packed up an amazing fresh picnic including the tomatoes, a nice slab of cheese, a small salami and the freshly baked bread and trekked along the creek behind the town. My wife and I sat there with our feet in the cool, crisp water running down from the mountains and the hot Spanish sun beating down on our backs. That day, I ate the most amazing tomatoes I’ve ever eaten with the crunchy bread and rustic local produce. It was to die for!

Which classic chef/restaurant do you rate highly and why?
Michael Roux. After working for the Roux family at the Waterside Inn, I have an amazing respect for his ability to consistently produce fantastic food. They’ve maintained such a high level of taste and service for such a long time, which is something that I truly admire and aspire to.

Which contemporary chef/restaurant do you rate and why?
My former boss at Quay, Peter Gilmour. He has such an amazing palate and a truly unique and unmatched way of thinking about food. His methods are so inspiring, and I love his intuition with food that allows him to understand how to achieve his desired result on the plate.

Favourite ingredients produced in Asia Pacific?
One of my favourite ingredients is actually the Olive Oil that I have designed with David Cockerill from Cudgegong Valley in Mudgee, Australia. It is honestly second to none. A truly delicate and complex product.

Favourite regional wine or beer?
Has to be the Garden Ale from Stone & Wood.

In your view, what’s the best dish on “The Stokehouse” menu right now?
Next week, I’m adding a delightful Salt crusted young Yorkshire pig, slow roasted pineapple and garum vinaigrette to the menu. It’s full of fresh, seasonal and sustainable produce – something I’m really excited to share with Stokehouse diners.

What was your biggest mistake as a trainee chef?
In the very first year of my apprenticeship, my Chef asked me to strain a stock for him. I jumped at the new task. I tipped the liquid down the sink and asked him how he’d like me to store the bones (as he did like things to be done a particular way). “YOU DID WHAT?!” is basically what he said, though perhaps in more colourful terms. I learned that day that the liquid is the prize when making stock. I’ve never heard the end of this little incident.

Do you cook at home, and if so, what’s one of your favourite family dishes?
most certainly cook at home! I love roasting Pork scotch fillet with a salad made up of fresh produce from my garden, a drizzle of aged balsamic and a nice cold beer.

Favourite piece of kitchen equipment?
My new cold smoker.

Your top tip for any young chef working their way up?
Never be afraid to ask the question if you’re unsure. And aim big. You will never know if you never try!

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