Angela Hartnett

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Angela Hartnett
Angela Maria Hartnett[1]

September 1968 (age 55)[2]
EducationCambridge Polytechnic
SpouseNeil Borthwick
Culinary career
Cooking styleItalian
Current restaurant(s)
Previous restaurant(s)
Award(s) won
  • Best Newcomer Award
    Square Meal Guides' BMW Best New Restaurant

Angela Maria Hartnett OBE (born September 1968) is an English Michelin-starred chef. A protégée of Gordon Ramsay who became well known by her appearances on British television, she was Chef-Patron at Angela Hartnett at The Connaught in London. Currently, she is Chef-Patron for Murano in Mayfair,[3] Café Murano in St James's & Covent Garden and Cucina Angelina in Courchevel (France).

Early life and education[edit]

Angela Hartnett was born in Kent to Patrick Hartnett, an Irish sailor in the Merchant Navy, and Giuliana Pesci,[1] whose parents had migrated from Bardi in Emilia-Romagna to Ferndale in the Rhondda Valley, part of a substantial Welsh Italian community. Her father died when she was seven years old.

Her mother moved the young family (older brother and younger sister) to Upminster in Outer London to be closer to both sets of grandparents. Their Italian maternal grandmother cared for the children whilst Giuliana worked long hours as a dinner lady and nanny. At 18 Hartnett went to Italy for a year to work as an au pair before graduating with a degree in history at Cambridge Polytechnic.[4][5]


Starting relatively late in her chosen career path, she learned on the job at a hotel in Cambridge, then at the Sandy Lane Hotel restaurant in Barbados.[5][6]

In 1994, she returned to the UK, and undertook a one-day trial at Gordon Ramsay's first restaurant Aubergine. Alongside Marcus Wareing, she worked six days a week alongside Ramsay for longer than the two weeks Wareing predicted – Ramsay called her a bitch occasionally, alongside his favoured name for her: Dizzy Lizzy.[5] She supported Ramsay at Zafferano and L'Oranger, then joining Wareing as his sous chef at Petrus. After launching Amaryllis in Scotland with David Dempsey in 2001, Hartnett helped with the launch of Verre in Dubai, Ramsay's first overseas restaurant.[6]

In 2003, Hartnett won the 'Best Newcomer Award' and the SquareMeal Guides' BMW Best New Restaurant award for the two restaurants at The Connaught.[7] In 2004, she netted her first Michelin star.[8] In 2007, she opened Cielo, a Ramsay Group restaurant in Boca Raton.[9] She made her first television appearance in the first series of ITV1's Hell's Kitchen.[7] In 2015, Angela took part in the final episode, and oversaw the final task for MasterChef UK.

Murano in 2010

Just before The Connaught Hotel closed for restoration in mid-2007, Hartnett published her first book, Cucina: Three Generations of Italian Family Cooking; while it was closed she was seen on BBC's Kitchen Criminals and Take on the Takeaway. Gordon Ramsay Holdings Ltd agreed to cease their contract with The Connaught Hotel in September 2007, and in August 2008 Hartnett launched Murano, a fine-dining Italian restaurant in Mayfair.[4][10] Murano has subsequently been awarded one Michelin star and is the holder of four AA Rosettes. She created Cafe Murano, a more relaxed setting, in St James in November 2013 and a further site in Covent Garden in July 2015, alongside Pastificio, a deli-cafe, wine bar and pasta factory, making fresh pasta for the restaurants every four hours. In 2013 she opened Merchant's Tavern in collaboration with Neil Borthwick and Canteen founders Dominic Lake and Patrick Clayton-Malone.

From January to March 2016, Hartnett presented Tomorrow’s Food alongside Dara Ó Briain, Chris Bavin and Dr Shini Somara. The BBC One show looks at the cutting-edge technologies and produce appearing in farms, supermarkets, kitchens and restaurants around the world, and how this is transforming the way we grow, buy and eat our food.[11] In 2020, Hartnett joined Bavin and Mary Berry as a judge on the BBC One reality cooking show Best Home Cook, replacing series one judge Dan Doherty.[12]

Hartnett was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2007 New Year Honours for services to the hospitality industry[13] and Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2022 New Year Honours for services to the hospitality industry and to the National Health Service during the Covid-19 response.[14]

For some years she has been a judge for the BBC Food and Farming Awards.[15] One of her fellow judges, journalist Sheila Dillon, profiled her in "A Life Through Food" on The Food Programme in January 2022.[16]

In 2018 she was profiled in Maya Gallus's documentary film The Heat: A Kitchen (R)evolution.[17]

Personal life[edit]

Neil Borthwick, Angela Hartnett in 2016

Hartnett is married to Neil Borthwick, head chef of Hartnett's restaurant Merchant's Tavern and former sous-chef of Phil Howard's Michelin-starred The Square,[18][19] and lives in Spitalfields with her sister, in a house owned by Hartnett and her brother.[20][21] She owned a Jack Russell called Alfie that she rescued from Battersea Dogs Home in 2007,[22] and also has a beagle named Otis that was previously owned by her sister.[citation needed] She spends a holiday every year in Bardi,[citation needed] the town from where most of the Welsh-based Italian families can trace their roots.[4]

Hartnett is an avid football fan and supports Arsenal F.C. based in North London.


  1. ^ a b c England & Wales, Civil Registration Birth Index, 1916–2007
  2. ^ "Angela Maria HARTNETT". Companies House. Retrieved 5 January 2020.
  3. ^ "Murano". Retrieved 29 March 2016.
  4. ^ a b c Cavendish, Lucy (2 August 2008). "Angela Hartnett: kitchen influential". The Daily Telegraph.
  5. ^ a b c Cadwalladr, Carole (29 April 2007). "Ramsay's kitchen queen". The Guardian. UK. Archived from the original on 15 April 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  6. ^ a b "Angela Hartnett". UK TV Food. Archived from the original on 1 April 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  7. ^ a b "Angela hartnett". Lifestyle Food. Archived from the original on 31 July 2008. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  8. ^ "Angela Hartnett profile". 2 May 2008. Archived from the original on 17 May 2008. Retrieved 30 May 2008.
  9. ^ Richard Vines (13 September 2007). "Angela Hartnett Quits the Connaught, Plans New Ramsay Venture". Blooberg. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  10. ^ "Gordon Ramsay eats his own words". The Daily Telegraph. London. 20 January 2008. Archived from the original on 23 January 2008. Retrieved 25 April 2010.
  11. ^ "Tomorrow's Food- Presenter Biographies". BBC. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
  12. ^ "What's on TV and radio tonight: Thursday, 2 January". The Times. 2 January 2020. Retrieved 5 January 2020.
  13. ^ "No. 58196". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2006. p. 17.
  14. ^ "No. 63571". The London Gazette (Supplement). 1 January 2022. p. N12.
  15. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - Food and Farming Awards, Meet the Food & Farming Awards judges for 2019 - Angela Hartnett". BBC. Retrieved 1 July 2022.
  16. ^ "BBC Radio 4 - The Food Programme, Angela Hartnett: A Life Through Food". BBC. Retrieved 1 July 2022.
  17. ^ Isabel Teotonio, "New documentary the Heat puts spotlight on female chefs in male-dominated industry". Toronto Star, April 24, 2018.
  18. ^ Day, Elizabeth (17 August 2013). "Angela Hartnett: 'The first feeling I had was shock'". The Guardian. Retrieved 1 February 2021.
  19. ^ Muston, Samuel (30 August 2013). "Book It like Beckham". The Independent. Archived from the original on 7 May 2022. Retrieved 1 February 2021.
  20. ^ "Time and Place: Angela Hartnett". The Times. UK. 9 September 2007. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  21. ^ Demetriou, Danielle (25 July 2007). "My Home: Chef Angela Harnett". The Independent. UK. Archived from the original on 6 May 2011. Retrieved 7 April 2008.
  22. ^ "MYSPACE ANGELA HARTNETT, CHEF". The Observer Magazine. 30 August 2009.

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