Confessions of a Chef – Bernie Mintz

Bernie Mintz is a new author and longtime chef who resides in Stratford-Upon-Avon, where I met him with his family. In October, he launched his memoir of life behind the scenes in Confessions of a Chef and I was keen to find out why it is so popular.

I was privileged to be invited to the hugely successful launch at Massimo’s Milanese Caffe Vineria with my husband, joining Bernie’s family, friends and special guests. Bernie and his family extended warm and generous hospitality with wonderful Italian food and wine. Over 200 copies of his book sold that night, all signed by Bernie himself. This book makes a great stocking filler for all. 

This entertaining and raw autobiography depicts Bernie’s career from 16, starting at the very bottom to working his way up the ranks and finally to owning his own restaurant. 

Born and bred in Birmingham, Bernie was one of three boys. He had dyslexia, which in those days meant leaving school at 16 to train to be a chef. He studied catering at the Birmingham College of Food and Domestic Arts, which lead to him starting his own outside catering business and eventually establishing his restaurant.

“I was inspired to write my life story about working in this industry by a diverse mix of people, including family members, especially after a life-changing event in my personal life.” He told us that personal circumstances had given him time to self-reflect over the last year and that it was time for him to relay his story. Encouraged by his immediate family, whom he cherishes above all else, he started to make notes of key moments in his life as a chef. His aunt Olga Franklin, herself an author and journalist on Fleet Street, was also a great source of inspiration, as she had led such an exciting lifestyle. Ultimately, like many of us, Bernie did not want his life experiences and lessons to die with him. He wrote his memoirs hoping to make others laugh and take on board the meaning of life and work. 

Bernie’s career in the industry is vast. He has worked in every aspect of catering from emptying toilets to serving at Chateau Mouton Rothschild. He has moved in an array of circles: from cooking for ordinary people to cooking for royalty and catering for the private jet industry. Celebrities, MPs and even members of the Mob have dined on his food. Many of these stories and anecdotes can be read in his book. He is now known as a social influencer on TikTok as a result of his writings, blogs and media work in recent years.

Bernie, in his life and career, has used food as a medium to express himself and so his writing is merely an extension of this. His thoughts, his experiences, what he has seen and who he has mixed with are all part of his story. Bernie’s book also includes recipes “for the dishes that are often the stars of the show”.

Bernie describes writing as , “not that dissimilar to creating food on a plate. Like any good chef, innovation and creativity is key.” In his memoirs, he pulls no punches and exposes the hot, steamy, savage side of the industry. Readers need to be prepared for a “strong serving of reality, garnished with his wicked sense of humour”.

TikTok @Berniethechef

Confessions of a Chef is now available on Amazon

Bernie’s first illustrated children’s book – Wendy the Wok – is out soon.


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