Contributors > Chef

Freddy Bird

“Here’s a chef who’s not afraid of the more recherché items and knows a thing or two about provenance... he’s a chap who likes strong, clearly defined flavours.” Matthew Fort in The Guardian. Freddy is the Executive Head Chef of the award-winning and unique Lido restaurant in Bristol, its sister site the recently opened Thames Lido in Reading and Three Brothers Burgers located in the heart of Bristol.

“Freddy Bird is a resourceful chap in the right hands wild foods can add a frisson of excitement to the more familiar flavours of our national larder.” Bill Knott in The FT Weekend.

Freddy appeared on Michel Roux Jr's show Hidden Restaurants as a co-presenter. The Channel Four programme was devoted to unearthing remote and secretive eateries across the UK. Freddy has also appeared on the Hairy Bikers Comfort Food programme and Saturday Kitchen both on BBC One.

Freddy was born and bred in Bristol but worked in London at the two Michelin star restaurant The Square with Philip Howard and then later at Moro with Sam & Sam Clark – where his love for Moorish food and cooking over fire was born.

He returned to Bristol where he met Arne Ringer and was given the opportunity to establish a bespoke restaurant in the rejuvenated Clifton Victorian Baths. Dating back to 1849, the Lido in is one of the oldest surviving in the UK, allowing all year round swimming. Having closed in 1990, the baths were left in decay for many years until Arne purchased the site following a local campaign to ‘save the Lido’. The campaign gained strength when English heritage issued a grade 2* listing to the building which protected it from demolition. The Bristol Lido is a unique offering with an outdoor swimming pool and spa accompanied by a restaurant, bar and café. 

From its launch in 2008, Freddy has developed his unique take on Moorish and Mediterranean cooking in the kitchens at The Lido. He has a distinctly relaxed and pretension-free approach to cooking and dining and gives particular focus to the provenance of his ingredients and often uses his own foraged foods. Freddy is a lover of the outdoors and is often be found cooking over fire outdoors and indoors.

All three restaurants showcase Freddy’s food philosophy, his passion for ingredients and their careful sourcing. Freddy’s restaurants have received critical acclaim and many national awards including the Observer Food Monthly Awards.

Photography by Jonny Birch