Internationally renowned chef Aaron Teece has cooked intimate dinners for the Queen, Kate Moss and Keira Knightley, and catered glamorous soirées for glittering crowds. Now he’s launching a new project that will showcase the kitchen stars of the future in a venue that was once the crown jewel of Sydney dining.
Teece, represented by Entrée Management, has created an Australian first: Sunday Sous Sessions, a series of four dinners highlighting a sous chef from a high-profile restaurant. Each young up-and-coming talent will take over the kitchen of the former Marque restaurant, an iconic site on Crown Street Surry Hills, and create a five-course degustation with wine pairings for 50 guests.
It is Teece’s way of giving back to an industry that’s served him well. Hailing from the Northern Rivers district near Byron Bay, he spent his apprenticeship and early years in Ballina and Brisbane. As with many young chefs, the lure of London’s restaurants eventually drew him to the British capital, where he landed a role as sous chef at Harvey Nichols’ 5th Floor Restaurant.
Teece eventually turned his hand to private chef work, whipping up meals for models and actors, among them Moss and Knightley. Far more daunting was a long-term gig as personal chef to Dame Margaret Thatcher, during the former British Prime Minister’s retirement years. On many occasions, Dame Margaret had Her Majesty the Queen drop over for a bite – but Teece’s lips are sealed on the details!
When Teece returned to Australia, he channelled all that hard-won overseas experience into his own project, Studio Neon: an abandoned art studio in Waterloo where he could stage pop-up food events in an edgy, eclectic space. Its popularity pushed Teece to the forefront of the Sydney catering scene, in demand for everything from corporate launches to film festivals to private bashes for billionaires.
Studio Neon the location no longer exists, but its name and brand live on in the Sydney hospitality scene. It is the driving force behind Sunday Sous Sessions, with Teece on hand as an experienced and eager mentor to help the young chefs make the most of the experience.