Introducing Bistro Freddie: Where British Fare Meets French Flair

The Staff Canteen

In the heart of Shoreditch, a cozy culinary haven opened just a few months ago, blending the best of British bistro traditions with a touch of French finesse. Meet Anna Sogaard, the creative force behind Bistro Freddie.

"We cook classic British bistro dishes with slight French influences. We have an all-French wine list,” says Anna, the head chef and driving culinary genius behind the operation.

With a modest yet dedicated team of five chefs and a kitchen porter, Bistro Freddie prides itself on its intimate atmosphere, catering to around 42 guests at a time.

"Our cooking style is very down to earth, kind of back to basics," Anna explains. "We cook with a lot of butter, and we really like well-seasoned, modern dishes, but definitely with a nod to classic British flavours."

One standout dish on the menu is Anna's playful take on the beloved British classic, fish and chips. "My favourite thing to have at a chippie is fish and chips with curry sauce," she enthuses. "So, it was kind of a no-brainer to incorporate that into our menu. We're doing a bone-in tranche slice of plaice, deep-fried to have that fried chippy taste, served with a buttery curry sauce."

Anna Sogaard was brought up in a predominantly Danish family. “My dad is Danish and my mom is the first generation American who is also from a Danish family,” she explains. Anna's culinary journey began with humble roots, working as a front-of-house staff member in the United States before discovering her passion for cooking. After studying in Copenhagen and working in the culinary scene there, she found her way to England, initially settling in Manchester before making her mark in London.

"I absolutely loved it there," Anna recalls of her time in Manchester. "It was such an amazing place to be. People are super warm and welcoming." Her experience in Manchester ultimately led her to London, where she found herself drawn to the ethos of Bistro Freddie's parent company.

"When the concept of Bistro Freddie was pitched to me, I knew it was going to be kind of British Bistro, homely, no-fussy cooking food," Anna reflects. "I just thought that was exactly what I wanted to do. So I was really excited to come on board."

Anna's culinary philosophy revolves around the beauty of fresh, seasonal ingredients. "I'm inspired by ingredients," she asserts. "When an ingredient is good, it's so fun to work with."

Anna's menu commits to quality, with each dish carefully crafted to highlight the best of what each season has to offer. From the vibrant greens of spring peas to the hearty flavours of winter root vegetables, Anna's dishes celebrate the diversity and richness of the British culinary landscape.

"I think a lot of chefs would say that the ingredients tend to write the menus," she explains. "For me, it's mostly just the seasons and the ingredients that inspire me."

Beyond the kitchen, Anna draws inspiration from trailblazing women who have made their mark in the culinary world. "I'm also really inspired by women that kind of paved the way for people like me," she adds. "It inspires me to see women excelling in those fields."

Anna's passion for her craft is evident in every aspect of Bistro Freddie, from the carefully curated menu to the tight-knit team she leads. "

My sous chef Frankie and I worked together back in Manchester," Anna shares. "He was someone that I never really thought to ask because I thought he was going to come to London and do his own thing. But as we were interviewing for sous chefs, I just thought, what about Frankie? It's been such a dream to have someone that you know so well, and you don't have to kind of build-up that relationship as you go."

For Anna, success isn't just about accolades; it's about the satisfaction of her guests and the happiness of her team. "Success looks like people coming in the door and enjoying what we're doing," she says. "Seeing my team happy and thriving and seeing them enjoying what they do. If you can have fun with it and enjoy it, that's the ultimate success."

As Bistro Freddie continues to carve out its place in London's vibrant culinary scene, Anna remains focused on the present, taking each day as it comes.

"I think in this industry, it's kind of hard to have a long-term goal because this industry is just crazy," she muses. "I'd love to still be in a restaurant, still managing a kitchen, cooking good food, and just seeing where this industry takes me."

With Anna at the helm, Bistro Freddie is sure to be a shining star in London's gastronomic landscape, offering diners a taste of British comfort with a French twist.


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The Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 14th February 2024

Introducing Bistro Freddie: Where British Fare Meets French Flair