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        MEET THE TEAM

        We pride ourselves on our teams committed work ethic & love for what they do.

        Aiming to combine excellent service with a touch of Griffin flair, to make your visit with us one to remember…

        About our leaderS…

        JOE IZZO

        Chef Patron

        In every corner of The Griffin, you will find the stamp of Chef Patron, Joe Izzo. His love of great cuisine, beautiful surroundings and exceptional service is at the heart of The Griffin experience.

        Earlier in his career, Joe trained in catering school in Malta. After honing his skills in kitchens in Ireland and Australia, Joe came back to the UK and worked alongside Mitch Tonks at Fishworks, and Mark Hix at the Chophouse in Farringdon, where he was Sous Chef for six years. He and his wife then moved to Buckinghamshire and he soon joined the team of the Three Oaks in Gerrards Cross, where he met our former Head Chef, Mikey Seferysnki.

        In Old Amersham since 2013, running the 1220 newsagents turned café with his wife Rachel, Joe quickly became a staple of the Old Amersham community.

        In 2021, Joe spotted the opportunity to redevelop the site of a historic coaching inn, just a few doors away from 1220. Envisioning a space that would bring to life the history of the building, but with a modern yet characterful feel - The Griffin Bistro & Club was born.

        Joe has carefully selected his Head Chef, and every member of The Griffin team to ensure that everyone mirrors his commitment to making sure The Griffin experience goes beyond the plate. Whether it's the bustling bistro, events or the exclusive members club, his commitment to genuine service, warmth, fun and attentiveness waves seamlessly throughout The Griffin.

        TOMAS TOPOLAR

        Head Chef

        Tomas' culinary journey began in his homeland, Czech Republic, where he attended culinary school and honed his skills in various restaurants. After making the bold move to the UK nine years ago, Tomas quickly made a mark in the culinary scene. Tomas started his UK career as Chef de Partie at the renowned Gilbey's in Amersham. This early experience laid the foundation for his culinary skill. His dedication and talent did not go unnoticed, and soon he found himself at The Mash Inn in Radnage, as Sous Chef, under the guidance of Jon Parry.

        During his tenure at The Mash Inn, the restaurant achieved significant recognition, being listed among the 100 best restaurants in the UK by Estrella Damm. The Good Food Guide also crowned it Restaurant of the Year in the South East in 2020, solidifying Tomas' reputation as an integral part of a successful team. After a brief interlude at The Nags Head in Great Missenden, he returned to The Mash Inn as Head Chef, where he continued to showcase his culinary creativity and commitment to excellence.

        At The Griffin since 2024, Tomas brings his wealth of experience and passion for innovation, to the table. His food ethos revolves around zero waste and sustainability. He is dedicated to minimising food waste by employing Scandinavian techniques of food preservation, fermentation and pickling. Known also, for infusing his creations with Japanese and Asian flavours, Tomas takes pride in serving traditional cuisine with a true creative flair.

        Sous Chef

        Matt was fascinated by cooking from a young age due to various family members being Chefs and Bakers, so it was inevitable that cooking would become an integral part of his life. While at culinary school, Matt trained at The Grove Hotel in Hertfordshire, setting the foundations of his exceptional talent. His skill led him to London, where he worked in the kitchen of Guy Ritchie's renowned Lore of the Land. It was during this time, that he crossed paths with our former Head Chef, Mikey Seferynski, establishing connections that would later bring him to our kitchen. Taking the leap into entrepreneurship, Matt owned and successfully ran an Asian fusion plant-based restaurant in Berkhamsted, showcasing his ability to blend diverse flavours with a creative flair.

        In 2022, he joined The Griffin, bringing his experience and innovative approach to our culinary team. One of Matt's notable contributions is curating the immensely popular Small Plates evening menu at Bar Izzo, where he was Head Chef. This menu became a local favourite, featuring a delightful array of small, flavourful dishes that reflect Matt's commitment to culinary excellence. Working closely with our Head Chef, Tomas, and under the inspirational guidance of our owner Joe, Matt embraces the challenge of crafting dishes that balance flavours and textures with finesse. His positivity and vibrant personality in our kitchen is as delightful as his culinary creations.

        HARRY MCCARTHY

        General Manager

        Since our restaurant's opening in 2021, Harry has been an integral part of our close-knit Griffin family, embodying the spirit and warmth that defines our bistro. Described by customers as "warm and attentive", Harry brings a unique flair to our team.

        His dedication to providing exceptional service is not just a job but a genuine passion that emanates in every interaction - whether it's recommending the perfect dish, ensuring every detail of your dining experience is flawless, or simply sharing a friendly conversation with patrons.

        His commitment to the values of an independent establishment, align seamlessly with our own passion for delivering memorable experiences. Some would say Harry is in fact a feature of Old Amersham, having worked with Joe in his earlier ventures in the town, as well as other establishments including The Grocer, The Artichoke and 1220 Bistro.

        ELLA KRAFTCHENKO

        Restaurant Supervisor

        Whether you're a familiar face, or a first-time guest, Ella ensures your dining experience with us is truly exceptional. Radiating enthusiasm, she embodies The Griffin's commitment to hospitality: friendly, welcoming and vibrant.

        Ella loves the lively energy of Friday and Saturday nights at The Griffin, thrives on making our guests feel like cherished members of the Griffin family, and takes pride in contributing to our guests' overall enjoyment.

        Ella is also the creative force behind our superb social media content. Always looking for the perfect opportunity to share the magic of The Griffin with our followers - highlighting our Chef's amazing dishes, capturing the vibrant atmosphere, and providing behind-the-scenes glimpses into the heart of our establishment.

        Operations Manager

        The Griffin owes its seamless operation to the invaluable contributions of Audrey.

        A longstanding member of our dedicated team, Audrey has been an integral part of The Griffin since we opened, playing a crucial role in the day-to-day operations behind the scenes.

        Audrey oversees restaurant and event reservations, keeps our owner, Joe, well -informed, serves as a vital liaison between our Chefs and Front of House team, and ensures meticulous attention to every detail. With a background in hospitality, having previously been Manager at The Ivy House in Chalfont St. Peter, Audrey brings a wealth of expertise to our team, and simply put, we could not do it without her.