Five Minutes With…Andrea Torcolacci

img_1945Name, role and department:
Andrea Torcolacci. Head Chef at Birley and All Saints South, working mainly in Birley Kitchen, but often around campus.

How long have you been at Manchester Met?
I’ve been working for Manchester Met since January last year, but I had a little taste of working for the University during the Sainsbury’s Games in September 2015 for two weeks.

Favourite thing about the University:
Freedom, choices and diversity on top of the lovely package you get when you working for a prestigious university.

A typical working day:
I start work usually at around seven, realize that I will have to spend nearly all day with Billy (my second chef) and get over it.
Drink the lovely coffee that Sue (my Hospitality gem) makes me in the morning to help me get strength to cope with Billy and the day ahead, then brief staff on what’s on and what we need to do and get stuck in the cooking.
I finish at around three with the ordering and tidy up of the kitchen.

What is your ideal weekend?
To be honest, I have many options for a great weekend but all of them include at least going out with friends for a meal or for a few drinks, a car boot sale (love them!), going to places I have never been before, chilling watching Netflix or Sky Cinema…

Interesting fact about you:
I am Italian and grew up in the rural countryside of central Italy near Tuscany in a lovely working farm growing vegetables and breeding animals.
After deciding that cooking was my vocation, I decided that I wanted to make people happy with food and went to a catering college to be qualified as a chef. After a few years working in Italy, I decided to expand my horizons by learning a new language and move to sunny ‘Costa del Manchester’ in England.

What are you reading, watching or listening to at the moment:
I’ve got so many things to watch that will keep me busy all Christmas; my favourite, Games of Thrones, also Ru Paul Drag Race, Planet Earth, Strictly Come Dancing, Westworld and loads of movies on my Sky box.
I read recently a book named “Kitchen Confidential”, a true chef’s life in the kitchen.

Favourite place in the region:
I love walking in the countryside and getting all muddy and stopping in a local pub and have some honest food, so basically I like anywhere with a good view and a good pub.

Person you would most like to meet, past or present:
Alan Turing for what he’s done for England and for the world and yet isn’t really recognized, and who was persecuted for what he was. I would love to take him for a night out!

What items would take on a desert island and why:
Well not sure what I should choose if I was in a desert island I guess a pan and some matches for cooking, I’m sure there would be something for me to cook, and probably a full selection of vegetable seeds to grow and possibly Tomorite as a fertilizer!