Each month, we spend five minutes with one of the impressive professionals that call Harley Street home. This month, it's over to Fischer's to meet Mark Bloom, General Manager at Fischer's
Can you tell us a little bit about your work at Fischer’s?
I’m the General Manager of Fischer’s which is at the top end of Marylebone high-street, an informal neighbourhood restaurant that is very evocative of Austria in the early Twentieth Century. I’ve been here for about a year and a half. I was actually due to re-join the company earlier, (I had worked for many site within the Corbin & King group before,) but Covid put a stop to that as much of the hospitality industry was shut down. I oversee everything to do with the whole site so a lot of it is customer facing as well as the behind-the-scenes of the business of running a restaurant. I manage a team of over 50 staff.
Describe your average day.
No two days are really the same and it depends which time of day I start, but most importantly much of my time is spent with customers. You’ll see me on the restaurant floor a lot, the best way to get to know our customers is to get involved in the service and learning about them. That is the only way we can make the experience special and give people a reason to keep coming back. From a behind the scenes perspective a lot of my focus is on training and developing the team. We have daily briefings hosted by myself or one of the management team. We also focus across the group on training and development. One of the reasons I hope Fischers and Corbin & King as a whole is a great place to work is we invest in our teams and try and develop the next generation.
How did you get to where you are today?
Luck?! I had a slightly unconventional journey. My degree is in communications and media, but like a lot of people, I fell into hospitality and then fell in love with it. Initially I worked in the nightclub industry. I was then given an opportunity to work for Bespoke Hotels and while the hotel side was not my preference, I found I really enjoyed restaurants. From there I was introduced to Jeremy King who made it very clear, if I wanted to take a step up I needed to take a step back. I went to The Wolseley to work as a waiter and then worked my way up through the company also working at Colbert in Chelsea and Brasserie Zédel in Piccadilly. I stepped away for a bit, I had my own restaurant and even worked for Ministry of Sound’s members club ‘The Ministry’, but was then contacted to return and take over the helm at Fischers.
How has Covid-19 impacted your organisation?
It wouldn’t be an understatement to say it was a devastating time for the whole industry. We survived and we are so lucky to have such a loyal following that once people were allowed out we saw all our regular faces again, but equally as importantly we started seeing new customers too. We’re still suffering from the well-publicised staffing shortages, but we’re moving in the right direction.
What do you like most about being based near Harley Street?
There’s such a mixture of people. When you think of Harley Street you immediately think of the medical profession but we see so many different people. It really keeps things interesting.
What are your thoughts on the future of the Harley Street Area?
I think it’s not reached its full potential yet. There are so many hidden green spaces, different restaurants and things to visit. It’s great to see more and more events in the area, not only for the community, but for people further afield to come in and enjoy such as the charity diner we took part in recently.
How does the Harley Street Business Improvement District support your business?
It’s so important, as a neighbourhood restaurant we like to be involved with those around us. It really allows us to have a presence with some of parts of the community we wouldn’t normally have direct interactions with and is great to bring cohesion to a lot of different areas.
How could a visitor to the area spend their time here?
At Fischer’s, of course!
Any particular recommendations or hidden gems?
There are a lot in the area. There are some particularly good art galleries that I am partial to window shopping at! Daunt books is a lovely shop to browse and has some great author events. The Marylebone farmer’s market every Sunday is well worth a visit and Regent’s Park open air theatre always has a great programme of productions.
If you could describe the Harley Street area in three words, what would they be?
Eclectic, Evolving, ExcitingBack