Who’s Cooking Dinner? raises over £530,000 for leukaemia research

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Just over two weeks ago we were at the Four Seasons Hotel at Park Lane for one of the biggest food events of the year – Who’s Cooking Dinner? which sees 20 of the country’s best chefs cook in one kitchen to raise money for Leuka (the leading leukaemia research charity). This year was even bigger and better raising more than £530,000.

The incredible chefs who generously gave their time for the cause included Ruth Rogers MBE (The River Café), Tom Kerridge (The Hand and Flowers), Adam Byatt (Trinity), Hélène Darroze (Hélène Darroze at The Connaught), Isaac McHale (The Clove Club), José Pizarro (Pizarro), Bjoern Weissgerber (Sexy Fish) James Lowe (Lyle’s), Francesco Mazzei (Sartoria), Brett Graham (The Ledbury), Ashley Palmer-Watts (Dinner by Heston Blumenthal), Mark Hix MBE (HIX), Peter Gordon (The Providores), Rainer Becker (Zuma), Angela Hartnett with Neil Borthwick (Murano, Merchants Tavern), Nuno Mendes (Chiltern Firehouse), Giorgio Locatelli (Locanda Locatelli), Tim Hughes (Scott’s), Hideki Hiwatashi (Sake no Hana) and Tong Chee Hwee (HKK). Collectively the chefs hold 15 Michelin stars between them.

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The top three auctions of the night amassed a total of £104,000 with Peter Gordon and José Pizarro’s dinner in San Sebastián going for £45,000. Francesco Mazzei’s two auction dinners raised £34,000 and Hélène Darroze’s dinner went for an impressive £25,000.

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It’s difficult to sum up such a unique event in words but it’s truly special and we are so honored to be a part of it and we’re looking forward to working on Who’s  Cooking Dinner? 2018.

www.whoscookingdinner.com

 

The Maestro Matt Whiley to open bar in Hoxton

Matt Whiley

 

From foraged ingredients and house ferments to a zero waste food offering, Hoxton’s soon-to-open cocktail bar Scout is set to celebrate great British produce on Great Eastern Street with inventive and unforgettable cocktails.

The bar which will only use fresh produce from the British Isles has been developed by renowned bartender Matt Whiley – the man behind Peg + Patriot.

Seasonality will underpin Scout’s menu with a focus on minimal waste to ensure it’s a conscious and sustainable operation that shouts from the rooftops how incredible produce from the British Isles is. Scout’s menus will adapt often, changing as produce from farmers and growers comes in and out of season, whilst available foraged ingredients and house ferments will combine to create unique twists on the classics and inspired modern signatures.

A unique addition to the bar will be the basement Laboratory with a 10-seat private area featuring an exclusive menu of daily changing libations that the team are developing in real time for future menus. Providing a front row seat delivering insights into how Matt and the team create, adjust and perfect cocktails.

Scout opens on 11th April 2017.

Stellar lineup for this year’s Who’s Cooking Dinner?

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‘The most extraordinary culinary event of the year’, Who’s Cooking Dinner? returns this March and we’re super excited to work on this prestigious night again.

The events sees 20 of the UK’s most celebrated chefs share the kitchen for one evening’s service at Four Seasons Hotel at Park Lane. On Monday 6th March 200 lucky diners will relish an exclusive evening of unforgettable dishes from world-class culinary talent, with the event raising vital funds for research and treatment into leukaemia and blood cancers.

With an impressive collection of 15 Michelin stars between them 2017’s chef line-up includes: Ruth Rogers MBE (The River Café), Tom Kerridge (The Hand and Flowers), Adam Byatt (Trinity), Hélène Darroze (Hélène Darroze at The Connaught), Isaac McHale (The Clove Club), José Pizarro (Pizarro), Bjoern Weissgerber (Sexy Fish) James Lowe (Lyle’s), Francesco Mazzei (Sartoria), Brett Graham (The Ledbury), Ashley Palmer-Watts (Dinner by Heston Blumenthal), Mark Hix MBE (HIX), Peter Gordon (The Providores), Rainer Becker (Zuma), Angela Hartnett with Neil Borthwick (Murano, Merchants Tavern), Nuno Mendes (Chiltern Firehouse), Giorgio Locatelli (Locanda Locatelli), Tim Hughes (Scott’s), Hideki Hiwatashi (Sake no Hana) and Tong Chee Hwee (HKK).

A concept created by chef Peter Gordon in 1998, the annual ‘Who’s Cooking Dinner?’ evening is one of the city’s most celebrated dining occasions.

www.whoscookingdinner.com

A Love Affair with Nice (Part 2)

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I naively thought I knew ALL the hot spots in Nice from when I lived here… oh how I was wrong! So wrong. On one of our walks we stumbled on the amazing Le Plongeoir – a unique restaurant / bar on the edge of the coast. The views are absolutely stunning.

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It’s the perfect place for a long boozy lunch whilst catching some sun and taking in the views. Honestly, time does fly here. Without wanting to sound corny, I got lost in my thoughts just taking in my surroundings. It’s breathtaking.

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Sadly, the food at Le Plongeoir didn’t match its views. It was a little on the pricey side and didn’t feel it was great value for money. However, this is the kind of place you come for the overall experience. Also, I’d say at night the restaurant / bar comes alive and it’s definitely worth a visit just for drinks and charcuterie.

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During our trip I took my fiancé to all my favourite places. I was surprised to see that not a lot had changed. Yes there were a number of new restaurants but mostly it felt the same as seven years ago. In many ways I found that comforting and reminded me of all the good memories I had.

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A restaurant I’d recommend without question is Olive & Artichaut located in the Old Town. It’s a very cute, small-cover restaurant with an open kitchen. Being the first to arrive, we grabbed the best seat in the house – right opposite the kitchen and watched the chefs work their magic.

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A warning: it was hard to get a table here, clearly a popular spot. It took three attempts before we managed to bag a table for lunch. Definitely would recommend booking in advance.

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The food is well executed, the menu is creative and flavour is right on point. The standout dish was the seabass with pumpkin purée. I could have happily just eaten that and would have been satisfied.

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After our mega three-course lunch, a long walk was needed and it doesn’t take much convincing for my favourite stroll in the city – walking along Promenade des Anglais up to the port.

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The port is colourful – the buildings are a beautiful backdrop to the yachts and fishing boats. It’s also really relaxing here – ideal if you want to escape the noise from the rest of the city. A walk to the lighthouse gives fantastic views of the coastline. There were a few snapping away on their cameras but the majority like me, sat in silence taking in the natural beauty and just being in the moment.

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www.nicetourisme.com

S.L.

A Love Affair with Nice (Part 1)

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Seven years ago I decided to pack up all my belongings, leave my home (and my loved ones) to move to the South of France – Nice precisely. Honestly, it was an impulsive decision but I was seeking an adventure and wanted to flirt with my love affair with France.

Of course, I was terrified, in fact when I arrived I called my sister near to tears regretting my decision. BUT that soon wore off after my first week in the sun and what I experienced was a lot of good wine, unforgettable days and nights out with my new friends and created some of the best memories. Living in Nice and Paris really helped shaped me as a person and looking back, I’m glad I took the jump.

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This summer, I decided to return to Nice to show my fiancé why I fell in love with this beautiful city in hope that he would love it too. I insisted on being his tour guide (much to his annoyance).

As soon as we stepped off the plane, naturally my first instinct was to grab a bite to eat. Our first stop was a lovely café, Déli Bo near the Musée d’Art Moderne et d’Art Contemporain. There’s a great selection of brunch options and the highlight is definitely their cakes.

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Deli Bo’s ‘Balthazar’ was my favourite, a delicious three chocolate mousse.

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Vieux Nice (Old Town) is the lively part of the city and full of hidden treasures.

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It’s perfect for getting lost in the small, windy roads and stumbling on vintage shops, cute little restaurants, street food, spice shops, the Cathédrale Ste-Réparate and my favourite… Fenocchio. Stupidly, I forgot to take a picture of this epic ice cream stall – which has over 90 ice cream flavours – clearly I was too busy stuffing my face!

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The buildings are truly stunning and can feel like you’ve stepped back in time.

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Also within Vieux Nice is a good Italian called La Favola – which became a regular of ours (much to my annoyance). My partner insisted on the many visits. Don’t get me wrong, the food is definitely worth a try but there is only so much pasta I can consume…  I’d definitely recommend this dish below.

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I’ll be sharing more from my trip to Nice – so keep an eye out on the blog.

S.L.