Food for thought: Brendan Barwise

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Brendan Barwise is head chef at the Sentinel Brewhouse on Shoreham Street, and volunteers at the Junk Food Project at Regather Works.

Are you a cook?

All the time – I’ve been chef-ing in London for the last 5 years and recently moved back to Sheffield to head up the kitchen team at the new Sentinel Brewhouse

Any cooking tips?

Try replacing wine in your cooking with a beer instead. That’s the essence of the kitchen here at Sentinel, slow-braising cuts of meat in Porters and Stouts or curing fish with Wheat beer. Experiment with different beer styles, and always save a drop for the chef.

What’s your favourite dish?

Guilty pleasures all the way. Classic Buttermilk-fried chicken wings lathered in hot buffalo sauce, and a trusty fish-finger sandwich with pickles.

And a drink to go with it?

A fruity, tropical, hoppy beer like the Omnipollo ‘Mazarin’ or ‘Beavertown’s ‘Gamma Ray’

What’s your favourite restaurant in the Sheffield area?

I’ve not had much opportunity to try many places since moving back, but I always enjoy the food at The Milestone on Kelham Island, and the specials blackboard at the Rutland Arms on Brown Street has interesting and innovative dishes that are hard to refuse.

And pub?

The Sheaf View in Heeley. Interesting mix of people, always a great choice of ales and a fascinating map on the wall, of where the bombs fell in Sheffield during the war.

Worst meal ever had?

Every single one I had in catered halls of residence during my first year of college in York. From radioactive green curry to aubergine ‘slippers’ in the moussaka, it was a race to the sandwiches every dinner time for a whole year.

And best?

Too many to pick one in particular, but a Schweinshaxe (Roasted Pork Knuckle) the size of my face, with sauerkraut and potatoes at the Andechs Monastery in Munich is as close to simple perfection as you can get.

Who is your favourite TV cook?

I loved Keith Floyd when I was growing up, just his enthusiasm and love for tasty food (and drink). Of the current crop, I liked the Hairy Bikers, until they went on diets.

What do you think of Sheffield as a place to eat out?

Whilst the chains still appear to dominate the city centre, there are a great many more small, independents than there were 5 years ago, as well as some great street food. All serving interesting and diverse dishes and really promoting the identity of the city. I think it’s an exciting time for food in Sheffield.