‘Lola’s authentic but modern veg-led cooking, inspired by the exuberant flavours of the Mediterranean and the Middle East, has won national acclaim. Lola spent two and a half years running the critics favourite Darsham Nurseries Cafe in coastal Suffolk. Lola now works on a variety of projects and is available for events and collaborations.
Lola started working in kitchens at 18, and at 23 became head chef at the top all day eatery in Norwich, influenced by the new ‘casual dining’ restaurants of London, cooking her own take of European and Middle Eastern rural cuisine, with a focus on affordable, seasonal and organic produce.
Afterwards, Lola ran a catering company inspired by her love of the food of Istanbul, working with private clients, events and residencies.
Alongside this, a combined passion for social justice and food led her to front a social enterprise catering company training disadvantaged adults with valuable kitchen experience.
Lola went back to her Suffolk roots after seeing the potential of Darsham Nurseries Cafe, and alongside her sous chef Thom Eagle and her own personal grower, brought modern, ingredient-led dishes to the Suffolk wilderness, putting it on the map and in the top 100 restaurants in the UK at the national restaurant awards.
Lola took a step back from the stoves in 2017 to focus on her personal life, and spent time working with food charities, consulting for new businesses, volunteering and teaching affordable, healthy meals to those in need.