AUSTRALIAN GOOD FOOD GUIDE - Home of the Chef Hat Awards

From the World Trade Center to Canberra – Chef Chat with Thomas Heinrich.

By Leigh O’Connor.

Imagine being a young Chef in New York and finding yourself working 36 hours straight during the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center when your colleagues are unable to come to their shifts.

That’s one of the vivid memories Table by Canberra Gourmet Head Chef, Thomas Heinrich has of his time in the United States before returning Down Under and eventually opening his restaurant in the nation’s capital, where this limited-seating dining destination celebrates great food and exquisite flavours in elegant surroundings.

Born in Sydney, Thomas began his culinary career as a dishwasher in a commercial kitchen at the age of 15, where he watched as the Chefs cooked and created food, inspiring his desire to undertake an apprenticeship at TAFE.
From the World Trade Center to Canberra – Chef Chat with Thomas Heinrich.

Flying to the Big Apple at age 21, he secured a position at the Four Seasons Hotel, where he was able to hone his skills and acquire a depth of discipline in the culinary scene.

"I enjoyed meeting and cooking for celebrities in New York – it challenged me to work hard and improve my understanding of food preparation, cooking techniques and understanding different components that create a dish,” Thomas tells AGFG.

"Through hard work and team effort, at 24 years old I was promoted to Sous Chef and worked there for another three years.”

A couple of years later after a stint at Deep Blue Bistro in Sydney, Thomas was offered work at Four Seasons Hotel in Chicago as Chef de Cuisine, where the restaurant received a Michelin Star.

"As part of my role, I was sent to New Orleans and the Nappa Valley to open three different restaurant chains. My career continued as I became Executive Chef at The Hyatt Regency in Vancouver, British Columbia.”

Realising there is no place like home, Thomas returned to Australia and worked at several restaurants before settling in Canberra with his wife to raise their young family.
From the World Trade Center to Canberra – Chef Chat with Thomas Heinrich.

Diners visiting his restaurant can expect more than just dinner – it is an experience, where each course and the story tied to each dish is explained to guests.

With a base and training in a combination of French, Mediterranean and Asian cuisines, Thomas is obsessive-compulsive about his plating and jus – creating his sauce reductions can take up to 48 hours.

He brings to the AGFG table a guest favourite recipe for cured tuna and black garlic tart with goats’ feta and Spring peas. This is a visually stunning dish garnished with garlic flowers and needs to be served immediately to allow the flavours to meld together for a delightful culinary experience.

A fun fact Thomas shares…he loves to listen to classical music while he is creating his next masterpiece!

Featured Locations

Modern Australian    $$$$$

Table by Canberra Gourmet

Experience a fresh, intimate and unique fine-dining experience at Table by Canberra Gourmet on Scollay Street in Greenway. This limited-seating restaurant delivers an amazing celebration of great f...

Want more AGFG?
Subscribe to our newsletter for the latest articles & news...