Gregory Llewellyn is known in Australia for being American. He’s also known for cooking from his gut, loving late nights, doing the school run with his baseball cap on backwards and hanging and chatting with people who make him laugh. Gregory and his Australian wife Naomi, moved to Australia from the US and in 2012 they opened the perennially popular neighbourhood restaurant Hartsyard in Enmore, Sydney. With Gregory as chef and Naomi running front of house, this unstoppable duo have created a place that Terry Durack complimented as “wearing it’s heart on its sleeve and putting high-texture and drama into down-home food, Hartsyard has the chaotic feel of a party whose invitation has gone viral on Facebook”.
He was born and raised in a tiny two-horse town in upstate New York and learnt to cook because he was the middle child of 7 kids. At 15 he took a job as a kitchen hand at the only restaurant close enough to skateboard to, and at 20 he turned away from a promising career in snowboarding to study and then graduate top of his class at the Culinary Institute of America.
From there it was down the Hudson to New York City to work with the likes of Andrew Carmellini, Daniel Boulud and Alain Ducasse. A few years in Puerto Rico, a couple in LA running the kitchens of the prestigious boutique hotel Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica, and now here he is in Sydney. A respected and loved member of the wider hospo community, with a hatted restaurant, an award winning bar, a cookbook, a consulting business and a Youtube channel, born as a result of a facebook video on ‘how to make the ultimate cheese toastie’, that went viral with nearly 40 000 views in the first 24 hours of uploading.
Food is Gregory’s passion. His first love. His drive. His knowledge is immense and his ability to impart it succinct, relaxed and unintimidating. The kitchen is his natural habitat and cooking for people is how he shows them he cares. For him, that’s what it’s all about – building relationships and forging new ones through the common medium of food.
Gregory’s cooking is intense, creative, robust and colourful. Much like him!
To check out Hartsyard on Instagram click here