Champagne meets open-fire cooking for a wild night in rural Hampshire

Krug Festival will be hosted by cult Argentinian chef Francis Mallmann

Argentinian superchef Francis Mallmann will cook on open fires to reflect the cooking techniques of the gauchos and Native Americans
Argentinian superchef Francis Mallmann will cook on open fires to reflect the cooking techniques of the gauchos and Native Americans

Open-fire cooking and openings of prestigious vintage champagnes await visitors to this year’s Krug Festival, where events will be overseen by Argentinian superchef Francis Mallmann.

Mallmann’s dishes will be perfectly partnered with Krug champagnes
Mallmann’s dishes will be perfectly partnered with Krug champagnes

Taking place on Saturday July 29 at The Grange, an 18th-century heritage site that resembles a Greek temple in the heart of the Hampshire countryside, the aptly named Into The Wildfestival (£395 per person, or £750 for two) will feature live music and see Mallman – here making his UK cookery event debut – using sandpits, trenches and homemade domes to smoke, roast and chargrill locally sourced meat, fish and vegetables.

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“A refined maverick in the Krug spirit” is how Krug head Olivier Krug describes Patagonia-born Mallmann, who was trained in France by Michelin-starred chefs such as Roger Vergé and Alain Senderens, but turned his back on classical French cooking to craft a Nuevo Andean form of Argentinian cuisine. Based on seven cooking techniques relating to the open fires of the gauchos and Native Americans, his style has Spanish and Italian influences, and has sent fans flocking to his restaurants in Buenos Aires, Uruguay and Chile.

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Dishes on the night will be matched with champagnes from the Krug portfolio, including Krug Grande Cuvée, Krug Vintage and Krug Rosé, and accompanied by performances from artists selected by tastemaking platform Mahogany Sessions, which has helped launch the careers of the likes of double Brit Award winner Rag’n’Bone Man.

This highly theatrical culinary experience will unfold across The Grange, moving from the Palladian building and grand auditorium onto the sprawling lawn and down to the lake, before culminating in the open-fire feast. “Food and wine shouldn’t be like going to church,” says Mallmann. On July 29, it will be anything but.

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