Food for Thought

Go inside the mind — and London kitchen — of acclaimed culinary artist, Anna Hansen.

The Modern Pantry lives up to it's name, with an innovative menu shaped by wide-ranging international influences. Owner and chef Anna Hansen was born in Canada, raised in New Zealand, comes from Danish stock, and now calls London home. She humbly started her career washing dishes at one of London’s top eateries and has no formal culinary training, however, her regulars — which include Goldfrapp and Sam Mendes — don’t seem to mind. It’s Hansen’s creative approach to food, reflected in her eclectic mix of ingredients — think mussel, feta and coriander waffle served with seaweed, spring onion salad and roasted pumpkin seeds — that keeps foodies on their toes. She was recently awarded an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) in the Queen’s New Year Honor List for being one of the few female chefs to have left an indelible mark on the London restaurant scene. We sat down with her to learn more about the people, places and ingredients that get her creative juices flowing.