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Unusually for a chef, Chet Sharma's career actually started in physics, with him earning a PhD from the University of Oxford. While studying, however, Sharma took work at some of the top restaurants in the capital, including Locanda Locatelli and Benares. From there, his culinary career exploded, with stints at the now three Michelin-starred L'Enclume, two-starred Moor Hall and The Ledbury. Sharma then migrated to JKS Restaurants (the award-winning group that runs Lyle's, Trishna, Gymkhana and many more) as the group's development chef before finally opening BiBi in September 2021. Since it opened, BiBi has been praised for its creative, ever-changing menu and exciting flavours.
Sharma wanted to move away from the modern European fine dining of his previous haunts, instead striving to create more of a neighbourhood restaurant. The original concept for BiBi was a sort of chef's table situation, but after a pandemic-induced re-think, he decided to go for a more relaxed counter and booth format. Sharma employs a sigri (traditional northern Indian clay stove), as well as more complex kit like an advanced induction hob that doubles as a water bath to keep his cooking at the cutting edge.
Sustainability is also important to Sharma. He likes to champion British produce wherever he can, especially when it comes to seafood. As such, he likes to know the name of the boat and the fisherman that caught every piece of seafood he serves. The name BiBi means 'lady of the house' in Urdu, typically a term of endearment for grandmothers. Sharma chose this name to celebrate his two grandmothers, who both played similarly important but very different roles in his introduction to cooking.
Playing on nostaliga, many of Sharma's dishes hail back to his childhood in some way - evoking the flavours of treats or celebratory meals the chef enjoyed with his family growing up. This element combines with Sharma's precision-cookery and result in sparkling plates that perfectly balance flavour, texture and colour for a feast of sharing dishes.