Tom Ford is restaurant manager at Delifonseca Dockside, but has become a self-taught expert in the art of smoking and curing meat and fish
I’VE been working within the catering and hospitality sector for more than 10 years. I started out working in a coffee shop when I was 16 at my friend’s parents place and then in various pubs across the country before going to Leeds Metropolitan University to study music technology when I was 21.
My girlfriend was studying art in Liverpool at the same time, so when I graduated there was no question that I had to come to Liverpool.
She was working in the deli at Stanley Street at the time and introduced me to proprietor Candice Fonseca in 2007. My first week consisted of delivering Christmas hampers to local businesses and later I waited on in the restaurant. I became waiter of the year 2009-2010 and finally decided that I wanted to pursue it as a career.
Candice had decided that expansion was inevitable and asked if I wanted the role of restaurant manager at a new Delifonseca on the docks. So in 2010, head chef Martin Cooper and myself opened up Delifonseca Dockside and the rest, as they say is history.
The past five years have been spent at Delifonseca so I’ve been lucky enough to have been surrounded by amazing food and local produce.
I’m incredibly passionate about food and, of course, cooking, so about two years ago I set up Liverpool’s first supper club with my friends (www.liverpoolsupperclub.com).
Once every other month or so we put together a menu featuring a cuisine or method of cooking that we haven’t tried before.
Smoking and curing is something that I have been interested in since we started and the joy that comes from tucking into a bacon butty that you’ve dry cured, aged and then smoked yourself is out of this world.