VB Dines at Core by Clare Smyth

After the show and the Beauty launch, it was so nice to take a moment with my family. And what better way than to visit one of London’s most celebrated restaurants, Core, led by female chef Clare Smyth. I first tasted her food when she was the head chef at my friend Gordon Ramsay’s. I love her energy, her spirit, and her vision for making fine dining approachable yet elegant. Below are snaps from my family dinner, and my team spoke with Clare so that you can get to know more about someone I find inspiring. I hope you get the chance to visit her restaurant and share your thoughts with me! VB

“The royal wedding was a highlight as was receiving an MBE, but Core receiving two Michelin stars in its first year was probably my biggest accomplishment,” says Clare Smyth, the chef and creator of Core, a fine dining restaurant focused on using sustainable and locally sourced ingredients. Clare began her culinary career in some of the world’s best kitchens—Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, Alain Ducasse’s Le Louis XV—before setting her sights on opening her own establishment. “It’s important that food connects with people,” says Clare who brings an unpretentious finesse to elevated dining. “I love nature, British product, and our culture. I always find inspiration and beauty in the most humble ingredients [and] elevating them to something spectacular.”

That mindset produces eye-catching (and Insta-friendly) results including Scottish langoustine with wasabi peas, rose geranium, and almond to ‘Cherry Bakewell’, Clare’s riff on the traditional dessert made with sour cherries, sorbet, and biscuit crumbs. A far cry from Clare’s first food memory—“school meals when I was 3—I wouldn’t eat them because they were so bad”—but the chef is always on the hunt to continue to innovate. Her advice? “Work and learn from the very best. It will be tough but you will learn the most and [see] what it takes to be successful.”

And while Core continues to rack up the accolades (five AA rosettes, Best Restaurant at the GQ Food and Drink Awards), Clare finds it’s her guests that provide her with lasting inspiration. “I am lucky to have many of my dream guests at Core. But I do love to have incredible female role models that I admire such as Karen Brady, Adele, the Duchess of Sussex, and of course VB.”