Flash-grilled: Edie Jobson

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Edie Jobson GM at high-end Mexican restaurant KOL in London's Marylebone on her career

Related tags Kol London Mexican cuisine Restaurant Fine dining

The GM at high-end Mexican restaurant KOL in London's Marylebone on working at The Groucho Club, the best drink to pair with fish and chips, and keeping calm under pressure.

What was your first job?
I was a cocktail waitress at The Groucho Club. It was a great entrance to the industry, so fun and I ended up getting to know the guests so well. Working somewhere with such a great regular base really builds your customer service confidence and sets you up to take that everywhere with you.

Why did you want to work in restaurants?
I just love being around people - after university I briefly worked in an office environment and constantly felt trapped by the lack of atmosphere and conversation. I quickly went back to hospitality and have never left.

If you weren’t in the industry, what would you do?
I am obsessed with interiors so would love to work within that - either within a design team or antiques collection.

What industry figure do you most admire, and why?
Margot Henderson! Always the most fun person in the room. Such great energy and Rochelle Canteen is one of my favourite spots in town.

Pet hate in the dining room?
When guests get their laptops out at the table.

What’s your best tip for keeping calm under pressure during a busy service?
We have a system called ‘next three things’ where you must always have your next three jobs lined up to be asked by anyone at any time. It really helps compartmentalise in a high-pressured environment and means anyone can jump in and help with one of the three tasks at any time they ask.

What’s the oddest thing a customer has said to you?
Gosh so many - to be honest you become a little numb to thinking any request is odd and automatically start thinking of a way to make it happen.

What’s the best meal you’ve ever eaten in a restaurant?
We went to Restaurant AT in Paris last year and it was incredible - I have been thinking about it almost every day since.

Most overrated food?

What’s your favourite comfort food, post shift?
Obscenely over buttered toast, you can’t beat it.

MasterChef or Great British Menu?
MasterChef as Great British Menu sadly doesn’t involve Greg Wallace.

If you could serve anyone, who would it be and why?
Wong Kar-Wai - In The Mood For Love​ is my favourite film of all time but all of his movies are so perfect. He is a genius.

What’s your earliest food memory?
My parents live out of the city and a neighbouring farmer once bought them a deer as a gift. He then proceeded to hang and gut it in front of us and then my mother served it the next day. Have struggled eating Venison since. I think I was only about seven… harrowing.

Where do you go when you want to let your hair down?
We end up at Bright most Sundays after service. The staff are amazing and it’s a great place to chill with a good bottle (or two).

Tipple of choice?
Mezcal martini - I had this in Mexico City when we went on a research trip and it rapidly became a staple.

Favourite food and drink pairing?
Fish and chips with champagne - it’s a little grandiose but my friend Bert introduced me to it and now I can’t go without.  

What advice would you give someone starting out in the industry?
Absorb as much as you can - ask to stage in different departments (reservations and events, bar, somms, kitchen, finance) being cross trained is so impactful to your career and you get a full understanding of how the business works and creates a great respect between departments.

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