September 24 2010
All things seemed autumn-themed this morning. The drizzle brought with it an early start for me (beginning with fish prep) and a new seasonal lunch menu designed to warm over the coming months – so no need to hibernate. One of my favourite new dishes is grouse served with lentils, swede, turnip and sorrel, and a smoked egg yolk with a little twist – a beignet made from set bread sauce coated in breadcrumbs, and deep fried; delicious. I look forward to hearing what you think.
Winter is also sneaking into my September as we are in the process of designing the menu for the 2010 Grey Goose Character & Cocktails: The Elton John Aids Foundation Winter Ball, taking place at the end of October. My second chef Chantelle and I are guiding, discussing and developing the dishes alongside a fantastic caterer in south London, called Last Supper. With Jean Paul Gaultier as the designer, the event is set to be a spectacular affair which we are honoured to be involved in and is such a worthy cause.
October will see a change in temperature for me as I’m heading to Australia for the Crave Sydney International Food Festival and Brazil for the Prazeres da Mesa food festival. It is a great opportunity for me to experience new flavours and to keep on top of emerging trends which I can possibly translate and develop over here. Although it’s rare for me, it’s good to get out of the kitchen every now and then for inspiration. As well as checking out restaurants and taking part in the festival, I’ll be cooking with three-hatted Chef, Peter Doyle, at Est. Restaurant in Sydney for two evenings which Chantelle and I have also been preparing for, so I am looking forward to seeing what we can rustle up.
No time was wasted in the kitchen this evening. We had a birthday party of 12 in our private room, The Pomerol, and another nine on the chef’s table in the kitchen. Service was alive and buzzing, and everyone seemed to be having a good time. One of our guests was a well-known author, which fact my sons will be very impressed with – assuming they believe me! There was a particularly international feel tonight; I met guests from Germany, Australia, USA and France.
Finishing with some admin and should be home for midnight tonight. Chance to catch up on the news and have a cup of tea before bed.