Alison Cavaliero

Alison Cavaliero

Alison joined Leiths in 1986 as a teacher and became Vice Principal in 1990.  She set up and has been running Leiths List since 1995 and in 2000 she took over day to day Leiths Academy business. Alison has been a contributing author to Leiths Cookery Bible and co-author of Leiths Contemporary Cooking and Leiths Vegetarian Bible.  She is now Principal of Leiths Academy. She is a regular Academy visiting teacher to partnership schools in the South, South and North West and Central areas

Kitchen gadget: decent knife and a stick blender

Chef most inspired by: Rick Stein and Nathan Outlaw, summer in North Cornwall isn't the same without a meal in Padstow and Rock 

Best food memory: the first meal at Menu Gordon Jones, then the second and the third

Guilty pleasure: builder's tea and homemade flapjack

Desert island ingredient: decent oil and vinegar

Top tipple: anything white and chilled

Sarah Keene

Sarah Keene

Sarah joined Leiths in 2014 after a long and successful publishing career as a senior commissioning editor of literary fiction and non-fiction.  She continues to work as a literary consultant.  As a very keen amateur cook, she is particularly interested in exploring world foods and experimenting with unusual ingredients.  She brings an unflappable approach to a busy office!

Kitchen gadget: spice blender

Chef most inspired by: Sophie Grigson. Her spices book is full of wondrous recipes, the Sri Lankan curry is a firm family favourite

Best food memory: seafood pizzas on Gozo

Guilty pleasure: toasted teacakes with lots of butter

Desert island ingredient: coconut oil and limes

Top tipple: caipirinia

Celia Francis
Visiting teacher

Celia Francis

Celia worked for the Archduke partnership at the Footstool restaurant in Smith Square, Westminster then joined Leiths School for further training leaving in 1991 with a Diploma in Food and Wine and a job at The Admirable Crichton where she was an events chef for 5 years.  She has worked as a private chef for clients in France, Greece, Switzerland, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Russia and now divides her time between cooking for regular private clients, teaching at Leiths School and being an Academy visiting teacher to partnership schools in the South East.

Kitchen gadget: my Vitamix for purees, super smooth soups and cheeky cocktails

Chef most inspired by: Gordon Ramsay for the most delicious meal at Restaurant Gordon Ramsay

Best food memory: family Sunday roast with Eve's Pud

Guilty pleasure: burgers from the barbeque, brioche buns and toppings galore

Desert island ingredient: fresh herbs

Top tipple: my sister's fabulous mojitos 


Andrea Wallace
Visiting teacher

Andrea Wallace

Andrea trained at Leiths School of Food and Wine and went on to work in different divisions of Leith's which is now owned by Compass, firstly in Events and Parties then on to Leith's Management.  Andrea has recently returned to Leiths School to be an Academy visiting teacher to partnership schools in the North East when she isn't teaching at Nottingham School of Cookery or demonstrating at food fairs around the country.

Kitchen gadget: Kenwood Chef

Chef most inspired by: my Mum closely followed by Delia in my formative years

Best food memory: eating freshly caught and griddled mezze of fish sitting by the Bosphorous at the fish market in Istanbul

Guilty pleasure: Whippy ice-cream by the beach

Desert island ingredient: Maldon sea salt

Top tipple: Cotswold gin and Fever Tree tonic

Sue Brown
Visiting teacher

Sue Brown

Sue completed the Leiths Diploma in 1989 and then went on to run private villas in Corfu and Ithaca,  followed by a Formula 1 motor racing season before setting up her own catering business in London providing Director's lunches and catering for private clients.  She sold her business in order to return to Leiths as a teacher.  Having relocated with her family to Dorset,  she is now Head of food technology at a prep school and is an Academy visiting teacher to a partnership school in Wiltshire.     

Kitchen gadget: Kitchen Aid pasta attachment

Chef most inspired by: Yotam Ottolenghi

Best food memory: first trip to the Fat Duck

Guilty pleasure: Midget gems

Desert island ingredient: smoked paprika

Top tipple: blanc de blanc Champagne

Sue Nixon
Visiting teacher

Sue Nixon

Sue worked as a freelance chef in a wide variety of roles after the Diploma including a winter season in a private chalet, private chefing, running private cooking lessons, assisting home economists and demonstrating. She has been teaching at Leiths since 2009 and is an Academy visiting teacher to partnership schools in the North and South East. Sue marks all the theory papers.

Kitchen gadget: Silicone spatula (she has 7)

Chefs most inspired by: Fanny Cradock, Marguerite Patten and Nigel Slater 

Best food memory: my whole family around the table for a roast, followed by crumble, cheese and wine

Guilty food pleasure: Tizer and Mini Cheddars

Desert Island ingredient: Eggs

Top tipple: Dark and Stormy...

Eithne Neame
Visiting teacher

Eithne Neame

Eithne trained at the Cordon Bleu, where she also taught for 15 years before joining the team at Leiths in 1992 as buyer. She returned to teaching and became head teacher. She is now a freelance teacher  for the Billingsgate Seafood  Training School and for Leiths.  She  is an Academy visiting teacher to partnership schools in the Central and South East areas of the country.  She is also the lead demonstrator guiding staff of new schools joining the Academy in the annual June 2 day skills training.

Kitchen gadget: A diamond knife steel

Chefs most inspired by: Peter Gordon and Rick Stein

Best food memory: Easting sushi on the beach in Sydney

Guilty food pleasure: Fresh anchovies

Desert Island ingredient: Fish....obviously ....!! 

Top tipple: a great wine