Murphia List 2021: Top Irish movers and shakers revealed

Round-up names most the influential Irish chefs, restaurateurs and more in London hospitality

Murphia List 2021: Fiona Leahy of event company Fiona Leahy Design

Murphia List 2021: Fiona Leahy of event company Fiona Leahy Design

 

The seventh annual Murphia List, recognising the contribution of Irish professionals to the London hospitality industry, is published today, and with 62 entries it is the most extensive to date.

During the global pandemic, Irish chefs, restaurateurs and other industry figures in the UK capital have continued to underpin the city’s hospitality industry and steer it through challenging times.

There are 11 new names on the 2021 list, and, coinciding with International Women’s Day, five of them are women. Tipperary-born Ciara O’Shea, who made her name as an international make-up artist, working with the likes of Madonna and Jayden Smith, joins the list with her husband, Ken Nally, from Wicklow, for their work on their Brixton grocery and coffee house F Mondays. O’Shea’s brother, the butcher Darragh O’Shea, is also on the list.

During lockdown, the Dublin-born chef Anna Haugh pivoted from her restaurant Myrtle to offering a bistro-to-your door meal delivery. Terry Wogan’s sons Mark and Alan of Homeslice pizzas developed a take-and-bake business model

Fiona Leahy, also from Tipperary, runs Fiona Leahy Design and has staged events for A-listers including Jade Jagger and the fashion brand Gucci. Molly Hutchinson, originally from Dublin, is a director of the Meatopia festival and also represents chefs through the offices of Miam, her talent agency.

Orla Hickey, group communications manager for the Maybourne hotel group, which includes Claridge’s and the Connaught, also makes the list for the first time, together with the sommelier and wine consultant Anne McHale.

In London, as elsewhere, it has been a challenging 12 months for those in the hospitality industry, but Murphia List inclusions have been at the forefront of innovative initiatives, as well as humanitarian responses. During lockdown, the Dublin-born chef Anna Haugh pivoted from her Chelsea restaurant Myrtle to offering a bistro-to-your door meal delivery. Terry Wogan’s sons Mark and Alan of Homeslice pizzas developed a take-and-bake business model.

Murphia List 2021: Joseph Ryan of the White Heart in Peckham
Murphia List 2021: Joseph Ryan of the White Heart in Peckham
Molly Hutchinson, a director of the Meatopia festival, is one of 11 new entries to the 2021 Murphia List.
Murphia List 2021: Molly Hutchinson of Meatopia
Ciara O’Shea and Ken Nally owners of F Mondays
Murphia List 2021: Ciara O’Shea and Ken Nally, owners of F Mondays
Fergal Lee, general manager of The Wolseley, is a new addition to the list.
Murphia List 2021: Fergal Lee, general manager of the Wolseley
Murphia List 2021: newcomer Orla Hickey, group communications manager for Maybourne hotels
Murphia List 2021: newcomer Orla Hickey of the Maybourne hotel group
Murphia List 2021: Anne McHale, wine consultant and master of wine
Murphia List 2021: Anne McHale, wine consultant and master of wine

Despite the challenges, there were new openings backed by Irish talent too. The Dubliner Nick Fitzgerald, who also makes the list for the first time this year, opened a taqueria, Tacos Padre, in Borough Market. Robin Gill, a longstanding stalwart of the London restaurant scene, branched out into the hotel sector, opening a bakery, two restaurants and three bars at the Birch hotel. In addition, Colin Kelly has been appointed head chef at a new hotel and restaurant at 22 Grosvenor Square, due to open later this year.

Noel Mahony, chief executive of BaxterStorey, helped co-ordinate the Feed NHS campaign, which served millions of meals to frontline workers, and the restaurateur John Nugent’s Green & Fortune hospitality business donates 400 meals a month to a local food bank and friends of the London Irish Centre.

The Murphia List is compiled by siblings Catherine and Gavin Hanly, who founded the London restaurant guide Hot Dinners in 2009. “We started the past year thinking Brexit would be the biggest issue Irish folk had to face when it came to working in London. Now we know that not only can they beat that but, when faced with a much greater challenge, you’ll find them at the forefront of helping others. It’s great to see everyone getting ready for the end of lockdown and with new openings and projects to look forward to, 2021 is definitely looking up for the Murphia in London,” Catherine Hanley says.

THE MURPHIA LIST 2021

Chefs

  • Kenneth Culhane Head chef, the Dysart
  • NEW Nick Fitzgerald Chef-patron, Tacos Padre
  • Shauna Froydenlund Chef-patron, Marcus
  • Fiona Hannon Head chef, Bentley’s
  • Anna Haugh Chef-patron, Myrtle
  • Colin Kelly Head chef, 22 Grosvenor Square
  • Marguerite Keogh Head chef, the Five Fields
  • Adrian Martin Chef-patron, Wildflower
  • Dave McCarthy Head chef, Scott’s
  • Patrick Powell Head chef, Allegra
  • Clare Smyth Chef patron, Core by Clare Smyth

Restaurateurs

  • Sinead Campbell Restaurateur, Bong Bong’s Manila Kanteen
  • Richard Corrigan Chef-patron, Corrigan Collection
  • John Devitt Owner, Koya Soho, Koya City
  • Garrett Fitzgerald Restaurateur, Butchies
  • Robin and Sarah Gill Restaurateurs and chef, Bermondsey Larder, Darby’s
  • Brian Hannon Restaurateur, Super 8 Restaurants: Smoking Goat, Kiln, Brat
  • John King Restaurateur, Bowling Bird
  • David Moore Founding director, Pied à Terre
  • John Nugent Chief executive, Green & Fortune
  • NEW Ciara O’Shea and Ken Nally Owners, F Mondays
  • Oliver Peyton Chief executive, Peyton & Byrne
  • Siobhan, Marie and Caitriona Peyton Cafe owners, Roastery + Toastery
  • Mark and Alan Wogan Directors, Homeslice

Pubs and bars

  • Gearoid Devane Founder, the Black Book
  • Cormac Gibney Bar manager, Gibney’s London
  • NEW Joseph Ryan Publican, the White Hart
  • Aaron Wall and Ciarán Smith Owners, Homeboy, the Bottle Cocktail Shop

Front of house

  • Richie Corrigan Operations director, Corrigan Collection
  • Conor Daly General manager, Allegra
  • NEW Fergal Lee General manager, the Wolseley
  • Darren McHugh Operations manager, MJMK
  • NEW Shane McHugh Wine buyer/group head sommelier, Goodman Group
  • Oisin Rogers Publican and restaurateur, the Guinea Grill and the Windmill
  • Joe Warwick Flambé consultant, Sola, Soho

Media

  • Jessica Corrigan Cofounder, Crab Communications
  • Diana Henry Journalist, food writer and broadcaster
  • NEW Orla Hickey Group communications manager, Maybourne hotels
  • Niamh Shields Food and travel writer and cookbook author

Behind the scenes

  • NEW Molly Hutchinson Founder, Miam Management and event director of Meatopia
  • NEW Fiona Leahy Founder, Fiona Leahy Design
  • Jim Lyons Food and beverage manager, Claridge’s
  • Noel Mahony Chief executive, BaxterStorey
  • Sinead Mallozzi Chief executive, Sketch
  • Charlie McCarthy Business development manager, WSET
  • NEW Anne McHale Wine consultant and master of wine
  • Paul McKenna Managing director, Red Branch Hospitality
  • Tom Mullin Managing partner, Pizza Pilgrims
  • Alex Muir Deputy director of operations, Sketch
  • Richard O’Connell Restaurant consultant, Seasoned Consultancy

Producers and retailers

  • James Goggin Head of sales, Empirical
  • Simon Lamont and NEW Phil Coulter Owners, Rocks Oysters
  • Evin O’Riordain Founder, the Kernel Brewery
  • Darragh O’Shea Owner, O’Shea’s Butchers
  • Steve Ryan Food photographer, cofounder of Root + Bone and 40FT Brewery
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