• Serbian - Wine Tour


    It is little known that Serbia has great potential to produce premium wines. Since it lays on the same latitude and has a similar climate as the great French and Italian wine regions, Serbia was in the nineteenth century a significant producer of wine in Europe.

    In the last decade numerous, high quality small private wineries have appeared in Serbia, that have made significant progress in methods and technology of growing grapes and wine production. Also, the popularity of Serbian wines in the European market is growing as indicated by the international awards and recognitions.


    Oplenac became the centre of the Serbian state in 19th century, but also the capital of wine as well. Nestled upon this rocky and woodland hillside, which is under the state’s protection, is the church of St George and the Mausoleum of Royal Family of Karadjordjevis.

    Even though the Karajordjević’s wine glorified this area, winemaking here dates back long before this Royal Family. Village Vinča and the Oplenac’s hill Romans named after the Neolithic word which means "wine" – Vincea. Here in this village is situated the “Aleksandrović” winery, which got its recipe for the best wine ever made in King’s cellar from the Royal Family’s cellarman.


    The Aleksandrovic Winery

    Triumph Gold is definitely the name that becomes the latest wine produced by the Aleksandrović winery. After eight decades of the production of the Triumph wine in the Royal Winery on the Oplenac hill, in central Serbia, the Aleksandrović family from nearby Vinča, has produced Triumph Gold – a blending of three white varieties of wine, which, according to a traditional recipe, rest in oak barrels. We have tasted that wine and the results are spectacular – a truly royal and golden wine – exactly as European Aristocracy and Royal Family members enjoyed over the years.

    A must see on the wine trail through Serbia is the Oplenac vineyard region and the village of Vinča, near Topola, known for its fruit production and, more recently, for its excellent wines. The Aleksandrović winery draws some 15,000 wine lovers and connoisseurs annually and represents a model of a modern wine cellar and wine tourism development. Tourists visit the vineyard first, and get to know the specific features of winemaking and the main grape varieties serving for that purpose. After that, they watch a film on the history of Oplenac vineyards and vinification, after which they go on a tour of the winery. The tourist tour ends with wine tasting – a treat to the soul and the palate, whereby you get a complete impression of the Aleksandrović wine brands.

    Find out more on how to book at:

    Please Quote Serbian Wine Tour ASL.


    school of wok

    London’s award-winning Asian cuisine specialist School of Wok gives corporate event packages a new meaning with the introduction of ‘Cooking for the Homeless’, an impactful way of leading participants in a fun day of cooking, whilst doing a little good for those less fortunate. Following the inspiring success of a trial over Christmas, School of Wok is now working in partnership with local charity The Passage (see notes for editors) dedicated to providing shelter, food and support for the homeless in London, who will benefit from the School’s initiative.

    During any ‘Cooking for the Homeless’ event, attendees will take part in a hands-on cookery course, creating a variety of Asian and Oriental dishes whilst working together in small teams and bond with their colleagues or clients. Once the cooking has been completed participants will then sit down together to enjoy their meal, with half of the quantity of food prepared collected by an employee of The Passage, so that those less-fortunate can do the same.

    School of Wok director and events creator, Neville Leaning says, ‘We want to help change the way people might view CSR (corporate social responsibility). Cooking a meal for someone else can be such a gesture of friendship and support, and so much fun to do! The aim is for these events to benefit and involve a variety of businesses as well as our local London community’.

    Additional costs when hosting a ‘Cooking for the Homeless’ event are kept to a minimum. Corporate packages for 1 to 15 people range from £1,275 to £1,475 for the whole group (larger groups can be accommodated). Despite doubling the quantity of food prepared during this hands-on event, School of Wok will offer this package for just an additional £15 per person for the package chosen, with the aim of keeping it affordable for a good cause.

    For information on ‘Cooking for the Homeless’ or to schedule a specific corporate event, contact the school’s events team at

    Founded by TV chef and author Jeremy Pang, School of Wok is at 61 Chandos Place, Covent Garden, London WC2N 4HG Tel: 020 7240 8818 @schoolofwok
    facebook: schoolofwok

  • Chef Radio Celebrates it's 1st Birthday - March 2015

    Chef Radio Logo 1

    We are pleased to announce that Chef Radio is now 12 months old this March 2015.

    We also have a Chef Radio Roadshow if you would like us to join you at your event and broadcast live with music interviews and chat, ideal for Shows, Product Launches, New Openings & Special Events, again contact Andy Richards on the e-mail above.

    Chef Radio is now available Free to download in Google Play Store to download for Android & in iTunes - Apple App Store for iPhone & iPad and all other Android & Apple devices. We are also in TuneIn for all Apple and Android devices including Smart TV's via the TuneIn app on your Smart TV Here!

    Apple app store

    Google Play

    tunein chef radio radio app

    If you would like to join us for a chat on chef radio simply e-mail Andy Richards on e-mail:

    Chef Radio Live Direct Line UK Tel: 020 3239 4814

    Chef Radio Live Direct Line International Tel: 44+ 20 3239 4814

    Chef Radio news up-dated are via our twitter and Facebook.
    Andy Richards - A.S.L. Celebrity Chefs & Chef Radio
    Tel: +44 (0)800 28 000 12

    Book or Hire a Celebrity Chefs

    Celebrity Chefs USA

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    Smartphone Radio App Download Here:



  • Worldwide Professional Restaurant Consultancy Service

    Mike Binnington pic 2

    A.S.L. Celebrity chefs are pleased to be able to offer you the ultimate in professional Restaurant consultancy, start-up and re-branding, with unique Celebrity branding services.

    ASL Professional Restaurant Consultancy was founded by Andy Richards (Senior Operations at ASL Celebrity Chefs) and Restauranteur Francis Carroll (Senior Restaurant Operations Consultant), as a unique, specialist Global restaurant consultancy delivering results.


    Whether you are looking to start your very own restaurant and want assistance with set-up, launch and ongoing success; or an existing restaurant wanting to grow or looking for advice; or if you would like to asset up a restaurant in the name of a Celebrity or leading restaurant brand franchise, we can help.

    With over 50 years of combined experience in hospitality, with a proven track record of creating and delivering successful and enduring restaurant brands, setting up franchise models, and an in-depth knowledge of every aspect of food service and the restaurant business, the team have unparalleled knowledge and expertise.

    Mike Binnington pic 3

    Our services include :

    Concept design- from new/ review
    Restaurant design
    Menu design & costing reviews
    Operations review
    Kitchen review
    PR & Marketing
    Celebrity branding / Restaurant branding service/ Franchise development

    Our Branding Service

    Our team has a vast network of professional contacts with celebrities, leading restaurant brands and celebrity chefs worldwide, with an intimate knowledge of the market and global hospitality & dining trends. We are fully experienced in creating franchise models and developing franchises with leading hospitality & hotelier companies around the world.

    So whether you are a restaurateur, hotelier or property owner / developer, looking to enhance your business with a brand partnership, we are here to assist you.

    Andy Richards

    Founder and senior operations at ASL Celebrity Chefs with over 20 years’ experience in Food, Catering and Hospitality from Food Delivery, Chef Recruitment and training, food festival/show events, Chef catering for Celebrities and high end corporations and even set-up to International Red carpet catering events. Andy has learnt from the ground up and has had the privilege of working with many well-known and great celebrity and Michelin star chefs. Andy is a great communicator and is skilled to NLP Masters level with a great understanding of people and the restaurant industry and is a regular on his own radio station Chef Radio which broadcasts 24/7 around the world at

    Francis Carroll

    Born in Belgium, Francis is one of the most experienced food and beverage experts in the industry. He is an expert in the establishment and operation of high-end hospitality businesses, with extensive hands-on and senior executive experience. In addition to creating and operating his own restaurant venues, he has worked internationally in the planning, operational set-up, launch and management of some of the world’s leading hotel and independent restaurants. He is acknowledged as an expert in hospitality branding and innovation, and maintains close relations with leading celebrity chefs and international restaurant brands. He created and developed the Marco Pierre White franchise model in the UK, and has recently headed the Jean Christophe Novelli franchise development in connection with Interstate Hotels & Resorts.

    Contact Us

    We are happy to talk through any aspect of running and managing a restaurant; reviewing a re-branding strategy; or a Celebrity Chef/Celebrity franchise endorsement. Setting up operations throughout the UK, USA, UAE, China & Russia, with a full consultancy and set-up operation bespoke to you.

    Setting up operations throughout in the UK, USA, UAE, China & Russia, with a full consultancy and set-up operation bespoke to you.

    For more information or to arrange a meeting, please contact Andy Richards on e-mail:

    Telephone: 44+ (0) 800 28 000 12

    See More at:



    Ken Hom Truffles Book

    Widely regarded as one of the world’s greatest authorities on oriental cooking, there is more to celebrity chef Ken Hom than meets the eye, and more than just Asian cookery.

    His latest book – Truffles – is a departure from the 36 books he has written on oriental cuisine, over a career that spans four decades. And this book, released in the UK at the end of 2014 and inspired by his love of French cooking, has just won the Gourmand Award 2014 for ‘Best Mushroom Book’ category – USA. It now goes forward to the Gourmand’s global awards which will be presented in June.

    An essential modern kitchen book, Truffles unveils and revels in the mystery of the world’s most sought after, scented ingredient, the black truffle of France, with enticing East-West recipes.

    Meanwhile, Ken Hom comes to London for a special book signing at celebrated bookshop ‘Books For Cooks’ at 4 Blenheim Crescent, London W11 1NN on Monday 17 February, between 6 and 8 pm. Meet this legendary chef and learn the fascinating story behind ‘Truffles’, which sells at £25 and is published by Serendia. It is sold in the UK and Europe through Kodansha Europe.

    In the 1980’s, Ken Hom met Alain Pébeyre and his son Pierre-Jean, of France’s legendary truffle family. They shared their intimate knowledge of the mysteries of the black truffle with him, and in more than two decades of the deepening friendship that followed, Ken was able to absorb the essence of the black truffle. ‘It was love at first sight when I came across French cooking and I have been enjoying the glories of French cuisine ever since’ says Ken Hom.

    ‘Having tasted, sampled and feasted my way through the colourful food markets and restaurants throughout France, the one ingredient that truly captured my imagination was the truffle. Ever since I was introduced to the black truffle of Perigord and its unique aroma in cooking, I was hooked’ he concludes.

    In this book, Pierre-Jean and Ken share their approach using truffles in a way that is mindful of French traditions and remains simple, direct and lighthearted.

    Ken Hom also incorporates various techniques and ideas from his own Chinese culinary background. The result is a meeting of East and West, a collaboration between Pierre-Jean and Ken to introduce recipes ranging from the simple to the elaborate, though never complicated, all of them featuring truffles as the star ingredient.

    Lavishly illustrated with photography by the acclaimed photographer Jean-Pierre Gabriel, the pictures are stunning and some of the most elegant ever to capture the essence of the black truffle and its culinary uses.


    Pizza Rossa

    Red is the colour most associated with passion, love and Valentine’s Day. Although City folks are treated to a splash of red every day at City-based Pizza Rossa, with its colourful range of artisanal pizza al taglio, new and extra treats await in store between 9 and 13 February, in the week leading up to Valentine’s Day.

    Injecting a little romance in the lunchtime of even the busiest City workers, there is ‘Pizza Rossa with Love’, a vegetarian special for the week, with tomato passata, mozzarella fiordilatte, pomegranate, blue cheese and a sprinkling of walnuts, at the special price of £2.99 per square slice. This delicious treat is warming, filling, yet low in gluten and salt. It can even be delivered to the office for a minimum order, by the platter or tray, for those wanting to share a Valentine’s treat with friends and colleagues.

    Salads at Pizza Rossa also get the Valentine makeover, with the introduction of ‘Raspberry’ , a salad with a base of mixed leaves, buffalo mozzarella, black olives, red peppers, nuts and raspberries in a Modena dressing, a tasty way of providing protein and some of your five-a-day for just £4.99 for a large salad. What’s not to love?

    Even the cakes, freshly made by the in-house patisserie chef, take on a red hue, with the best-selling, mouth-watering Plum Cake encased in white chocolate and raspberry, and selling at £2.49.

    If you are too busy for romance, make a date with Pizza Rossa, as these treats are only available during the Valentine Week. You may want to share them, but they are so tasty, that you may just want to enjoy them all by yourself. And if you are signed up to Pizza Rossa Rewards, the new loyalty scheme, benefits are immediate, worth £0.10 for every £1 spent.

    Inspired by the street food vendors of Italy, where pizza al taglio – by the square slice – is an urban lunchtime staple, Pizza Rossa is aimed at time-poor city workers offering a delicious and healthier product, easy to eat on the go, conveniently available and served piping hot in just 90 seconds. Slices start from 200kcals, with very low levels of yeast and salt, no sugar added, making it highly digestible at lunchtime.

    Pizza Rossa at 168 London Wall, EC2M 5QD. There is also a long term pop-up Pizza Rossa at 4-12 Whittington Avenue, corner of Leadenhall Market, London EC3V 1AB. @pizzarossaUK

  • Welcome to Insight Hypnotherapy Manchester

    Hayley Kiemel Clinical Hypnotherapist & Psychotherapist

    Hayley Kiemel Clinical Hypnotherapist & Psychotherapist
    Professional and Accredited
    With Clinics in Whitefield Hale & Eccles

    Whatever you wish to change or alter about your future, you have already made that first difficult step.


    Welcome to Insight Hypnotherapy Manchester congratulations you’ve just taken the first step to PERSONAL FREEDOM AND POSITIVE CHANGE.

    Do you sometimes feel that stress takes away your energy and limits you?

    Would you like to be more CONFIDENT and feel FREE?
    Take the first step to creating the life you want.






    Solution Focused Hypnotherapy aims to help you to recognise and use your resources to accomplish whatever you want, I use a powerful modern technique that enables positive change Quickly and Effectively. I understand how a personal problem or issue can sometimes seem so large or may have gone on for so long, that it feels like you may be stuck with it forever.

    If you feel ready to make the changes to your life that have been holding you back, then I am here to help you get to where you want to be.

    Whether your wish is to eradicate an unwanted habit or behaviour, to gain relief from a specific emotional issue, or to simply have more self-belief to make those all important changes in life, I really can help.


    Please call today to arrange your Consultation and find the way to a happier more balanced Life.


    Hayley Kiemel Clinical Hypnotherapist & Psychotherapist

  • “Sienna Restaurant - The last Hoorah, end of a lease, end of an era”

    Russell and Eléna Brown, owners of Michelin-starred Sienna Restaurant in Dorchester, have announced that they will be running their last service at the restaurant on Saturday 25th April 2015, twelve years to the day after they opened.

    Russell said, “Our lease comes to the end in May 2015 and, after careful consideration, Eléna and I have decided that it is time to look for a new opportunity and therefore won’t be renewing.”

    “We have had a fantastic run at Sienna over the years and, for me in particular, it has been an amazing journey. I have learnt a huge amount, shed some tears, made some true friends and above all I have been able to pursue a dream. It hasn’t always been an easy ride but the last five years have seen the business really flourish. Getting a Michelin star in 2010 was a huge turning point and I know it may seem odd that we are making this announce-ment, however I genuinely feel we have come as far as we can with Sienna in its current guise. A break in our lease is the right time to move on.”

    Russell and Elena have done some fundraising for Hospitality Action, the industry’s main benevolent charity, over the years and wanted to do something more before their last service at Sienna, so they will be donating £5 from every bill in April to the charity

    He went on to say, “Both Eléna and I would like to say a huge thank you to everyone who has supported us over the years; friends, family, staff, suppliers and all our customers. We hope that our remaining time will be as busy as ever and that we see as many of you as possible before April 25th. If you haven’t made it to us yet, it would be good to meet you! I will still be Tweeting away from @SiennaDorset and also from a new account @CreativeAboutCu so do keep reading to see what is happening.”

    Speaking of the future, Russell said, “I have a new website launching,
    and this will encompass a new blog, my consultancy service, teaching, writing, product development, and more. This will not only draw on my experience as a Michelin-starred chef and restaurant owner, but on the many areas of the in-dustry that I have been involved in outside of the restaurant. Equally, I am open to offers of employment, backing for a new business, or a specific project. Please do visit the website or contact me at

  • Bohemia Restaurant in Jersey Scoops ‘Head Chef of the Year Award’ at the Hotel Cateys

    Steve Smith, Head Chef, Bohemia, The Club Hotel & Spa, Jersey

    Chef Steve Smith

    Bohemia Restaurant in Jersey was celebrating yet another taste of success at the weekend, after Steve Smith was named Head Chef of the Year at the Hotel Cateys 2014. The glamorous awards ceremony was held at the Park Plaza Hotel Westminster Bridge on Friday 28 November 2014.

    Steve said: ‘I am beyond delighted to have received this award. The Hotel Cateys are one of the most important industry accolades out there and are the ones that everybody wants to win.’

    Steve beat off competition from nominees Lee Streeton, Executive Head Chef at Browns Hotel in London, and Matthew Tomkinson, Head Chef at The Montagu Arms Hotel in the New Forest.

    Bohemia Restaurant has had a hugely successful year after being named one of the best restaurants in the UK in The Sunday Times Top 100 Food List 2014. The restaurant was also recently awarded 4AA Rosettes, and received a top score in the Good Food Guide 2015.

    Head Chef Steve Smith was one of the youngest chefs in the country to achieve a Michelin star 10 years ago at the age of just 24, and the restaurant recently celebrated retaining its Michelin star for the tenth year in a row.

    Steve Smith has created a truly outstanding dining experience with his ingredient and flavour driven tasting menus. Bohemia Bar & Restaurant boasts a stellar reputation for its first rate cuisine, placing it firmly on the gastronomic map as a food-lover’s destination.

    Bohemia Restaurant, Green Street, St. Helier, Jersey JE2 4UH, Channel Islands
    For reservations please call: 01534 880 588 or visit

    Chef Radio High Res

    Chef Steve Smith joins us on Chef Radio on Thursday 4th Decemebr 2014. Tune in at

  • The Great British Cookbook - “Its #TGBCBDownloadday, help raise £200,000 Macmillan cancer support & Hospitality Action

    The Great British Cook Book

    200 Chefs, 200 recipes 10 regions £200,000 to be raised by Christmas!

    Michael Caines MBE, Rick Stein OBE, Anna Hansen MBE, Galton Blackiston, Richard Corrigan, Simon Rimmer, the charities, PR companies, project team, 200 chefs and restaurants in total from the UK are asking for your support.

    Together we aim to raise £200,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support Trust and Hospitality Action just in time for Christmas!

    It costs MacMillan £8 for an assessment pack that enables a cancer Clinical Nurse Specialist to assess and care plan the needs of 100 people with cancer. £52,720 could pay for a Macmillan nurse for a year, helping people living with cancer and their families receive essential medical, practical and emotional support.

    With £100 Hospitality Action could cover a month of heating for one of their beneficiaries who is suffering from a life threatening illness. £2,500 would buy a mobility scooter for a disabled beneficiary, giving them back their independence

    We want to hit the 20,000 download target we’ve set to provide so much more!

    By doing so we will be showcasing some of the finest culinary talent, restaurants, home grown and reared produce in the world let alone Great Britain! All of which culminates into 200 tantilising tasty culinary delights from all four corners of the UK.

    The GBCB will be seen by over 10 million on Twitter alone. This is before the regional, national media and GBCB support campaign kicks in on the build up too; the GBCB E-Book Download Friday on December 19th.

    Please Show you care and Click Below to add your social network support.

    All proceeds from the £12 e-book download go to the charities and will be split equally. On the download day we want to make A LOT of noise; are you up for getting involved?

    Keep the evening of November 20th free the venue is fit for a king, there’s no other place to be than in Nottingham! It’s a national PR launch not be missed.

    If you’re unable to make it you’ll no doubt hear about it, see the amazing food online and taste it once you’ve downloaded your copy.

    Chef.Radio.High.Res Banner

    Tune In To Chef Radio From 10am Friday 28th November through to 9.00am Monday 1st December

    Interviews with come of the UK best Top Chefs including-

    Chef Mike Binnington
    Chef Cyrus Todiwala OBE
    Chef Paul Heathcote MBE
    Chef Jay Morjaria
    Chef Suree
    Chef Danny Edwards. Jersey
    Chef Richard Turmer. 1 Michelin Star
    Chef Galton Blackiston. 1 Michelin Star
    Justin Rowntree
    Alexandra Hardwick #TGBCB

    Happy Days!

  • “At the end of my first day as a restaurant owner I put the following #Tweet out:

    Chef Phil Thompson

    Above: Chef Phil Thompson

    After my first day as a restaurant owner I am sitting in the corner sucking my thumb, rocking and waiting for my mum to come and get me...

    “Then about other 1,000 chefs re-tweeted it”

    MICHELIN starred former executive head chef at L’Auberge du Lac, Phil Thompson, tells the story of how he achieved his dream by taking the plunge and buying his own restaurant - and what he hopes is next.

    Catering has run in Phil Thompson’s family for many years. His grandmother, mother and one of his sisters were all chefs. His grandmother and in turn his mother were managers of the Ford’s canteen in his hometown of Dagenham and his father was a butcher.

    At the age of 12 Phil, now 36, started helping his uncle Mick who ran a contract catering business.

    “Basically every weekend I was in the kitchen washing pots while all my mates were out in the park playing football!” said Phil.

    When he left school he studied his NVQ level 1 & 2 in food and catering at Thurrock College, including front of house and waitering.

    His first job was at The Lainsborough in Hyde Park where Paul Gayler, extremely well know in the industry, was Head Chef.

    Phil explained how Paul said to him:
    “Don’t waste your potential, come and see me when you have finished college.
    “He was fellow Essex boy who really took me under his wing - a mentor figure who gave me the perfect start to my career.”

    After a couple of years Phil moved on to the Orrery in Marylebone, the first of Conran’s fine dining restaurants, run by Chris Galvin. He started as a Demi Chef de Partie and a year later was promoted to Chef de Partie.

    Within the first two years of opening, Chris Galvin was awarded a Michelin star.
    Phil explained how he was very proud to have been part of that:

    “For me, it was one of the best restaurants in London and always packed. There were eight chefs I worked with there, who now all have their own Michelin stars, all from the experience of working at the Orrery. It was the equivalent of the ‘Real Madrid’ of kitchens and all those great chefs influenced me.”

    As London chefs move around a lot and generally want five or six of the city’s best restaurants on their CVs, Phil then set his sights on more Michelin starred establishments.

    He took a job as Chef de Partie doing the ‘Sauce Section’ i.e. cooking the meat and preparing all the main courses at St Martin’s Lane Hotel.

    Straight from the off it became a celebrity haunt, with people such as Madonna and Leonardo di Caprio staying there.

    “I wanted a challenge and certainly got one. As part of the opening team it took four to five months before the kitchen, the team, staff and routines were in place and settled. I was given a room in the hotel to sleep in as it was nearly four months before I got a single day off,” said Phil.

    Next stop was the famous L’Escargot, one of the oldest Michelin star restaurants in London, which always had great Head Chefs at the helm, such as Marco Pierre White.

    Phil worked under Head Chef Jeff Galvin and enjoyed three years in the one Michelin starred and three AA Rosette Picasso room, as a Chef de Partie. He was promoted to Junior Sous Chef in his final year.

    Then he got a phone call from a Head Chef with who he’d previously worked with at the Orrery, saying he was looking for a number two at an estate in Hertfordshire called Brocket Hall, to work in the restaurant, ‘L’Auberge du Lac’.

    “When I saw the place I fell in love with it and also felt it was the right time to leave London,” said Phil.

    In 2002, just two months after Phil started, Jean Christophe Novelli joined Brocket Hall as Executive Chef. Shortly after joined he promoted Phil to Head Chef at the age of just 24. In 2005 Jean-Christophe Novelli left Brocket Hall, handing the reins over to Phil.

    In 2009 Phil achieved his first Michelin star and held it for four consecutive years.

    “We achieved the star through a lot of blood, sweat and tears. None of the team there had ever worked in a Michelin starred restaurant before so I was very proud.” said Phil.

    After 11 years as Executive Head Chef of Brocket Hall, Phil was keen to have his own place. So he and his fiancée Marianne went cap in had to close family and friends to find a deposit in order to secure a business loan.

    The couple wanted to stay in Hertfordshire which had become their new home and having looked at a number of places, eventually found Darcy’s Restaurant in St Albans. They knew immediately it was the place for them.
    The city’s centrally-based restaurant had been run by Kate d’Arcy and Ruth Hurren and was an established brand in the area. Sadly Kate d’Arcy had died of cancer and Ruth needed to sell.

    “When we met Ruth said she knew we would look after the business and take it to the next level. Ruth was delighted that a Michelin star chef wanted to take on her legacy. We bought the restaurant on the first of November 2013 and opened on the same day, just four weeks before the Christmas period.

    “I spent the first two months waking up every morning feeling sick, thinking have I done the right thing? I can honestly say it’s the scariest thing I’ve ever done,” Phil confessed.

    He went on:

    “We would not have got through this exceptionally challenging period without the commitment of the opening team. It was an emotionally roller coaster, to say the least. Everyone in the team went the extra mile to make THOMPSON@Darcy’s a success.

    “We’re trying to bring something different to St Albans, by way of a fine dining restaurant, meaning our guests don’t have to go into London. We are very much focused on our guests enjoying good seasonal produce, offering a friendly and relaxed dining environment.

    “At the start all my family told me not to be a chef but I genuinely wanted to be the best chef I could be. I want my restaurant to be one that everyone talks about and is excited about going to. When l go into the restaurant I want to see happy, smiling, satisfied faces. You make so many sacrifices in this job, I now want to show my family it was all worth it.”

    And he concluded: “I see St Albans as a great opportunity - passionate about good food and seasonal produce. I hope many more in St Albans will come to THOMPSON@Darcys to experience what we have to offer. I genuinely want to see new people come in to the restaurant and return as regulars loving and embracing the food I cook.”

    About THOMPSON@Darcy’s:

    Set in the heart of St Albans, THOMPSON@Darcy’s is run by highly experienced and former Michelin starred chef, Phil Thompson.

    The restaurant offers a relaxed, fun and affordable fine dining experience. It is modern, vibrant and busy, with each room offering a different feel and atmosphere without the pretence of formal fine dining. There is also a terrace for outdoor eating.

    ‘Fine dining’ usually brings dress code, etiquette and expense to mind. The focus for THOMPSON@Darcy’s is on the food and ingredients, creativity and the taste sensations unique to the restaurant. Mid week set lunch and dinner menus offer two to three courses in the region of £20.

  • Giggling Squid reopens in Hove after £150,000 storm damage

    Giggling Squid, the restaurant which introduced the “Thai Tapas” concept to Britain in 2009, has reopened its 80 cover, two floor Hove branch restaurant following a £150,000 refit. All four floors of the property were extensively damaged in July by a violent summer storm when thousands of gallons of rain water cascaded through roof.

    From its Hove origins six years ago, the privately owned restaurant has become of the UK’s fastest growing chains, currently operating ten restaurants, with three more openings scheduled for early 2015 and advanced negotiations taking place on another six properties nationwide.

    The expansion has come against a back drop of one of the worst economic downturns in a generation, having forged the concept in what remains the country’s most competitive dining scene outside - London – that of Brighton and Hove.

    In addition to Brighton and Hove, Giggling Squid currently operates successful venues in Crawley, Tunbridge Wells, Henley-on-Thames, Reigate, Stratford-upon-Avon, Marlow, Horsham and Sevenoaks. It will open in Bristol in February and Salisbury in March. Contracts have also been exchanged on a site in Chichester, West Sussex. Group turnover doubled in this year and is expected to redouble again in 2015. The company has been nominated for year’s Sussex Business Times ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ category.

    Co-owned by Pranee Laurillard and her husband Andy (the brand is derived from the nickname of one of their three children), Giggling Squid has developed its winning formula of serving “rustic” Thai cuisine, with the emphasis on sea- and street-food.

    Growing up in Thailand, Pranee was taught how to shop and cook by her mother and living on the banks of the Mekong river, developing a lifelong love of fresh fish.

    Moving to London to study for a masters degree, Pranee was shocked to find the preponderance of processed packaged foods and lack of fresh fish. Completing her studies, she was drawn to the Sussex coast and opted to open the couple’s first restaurant as a creative outlet for love of food and interior design skills. The reclaimed timbers sourced from Brighton’s skips and drift wood collected on Andy’s early morning runs, used in all Giggling Squid restaurants’ modern chic décor, reflect the group’s coastal origins. Much of the fish sold in Giggling Squid restaurants is still landed by fishing boats operating out of Shoreham.

    Gourmet Evening

    Hove will host Giggling Squid’s first Thai gourmet evening on Monday 26th January with an exquisite six-course tasting menu, costing £35 per head. There will also be the option of ordering the menu with different paired wine for each course for £49 per person. The gourmet menu will be served at other Giggling Squid restaurants throughout 2015, allowing customers to try smaller portions of new and favourite dishes at a single sitting.

    The wines will be selected by Toby Peirce of Brighton and Hove based Quaff Wines, who supplies all Giggling Squid restaurants.

    It is widely recognised in the industry that specific wines are notoriously hard to match with the flavours of Asian and oriental cuisine. But there are themes that work and common threads are found through the wine lists of the very top sommeliers at Michelin-starred oriental restaurants around the world.

    “It’s been a real challenge, but a great pleasure, choosing wines that complement the subtle fresh flavours, such as kaffir lime and lemon used in Thai cooking, yet are robust enough to stand up to chilli and ginger,” said Toby, advising “With whites, it's best to go with fruit-driven, aromatic varietals and blends, such as those from Alsace - think Pinot Gris, Riesling and Gewurztraminer in particular.”

    Peirce also recommends aromatic grade varieties such as viognier and sauvignon blanc which can work very well, especially in a blend. But he avoids dry, acidic wines which tend to clash with Thai food, preferring wines that are a little off-dry, or just very fruit-driven, as they work really well with any sweetness, heat or exotic flavours in the dish.

    Quaff has designed a wine list which shows a combination of the wines customers expect to see, such as Pinot Grigio and Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, with more aromatic and exotic styles

    Peirce encourages customers to be brave enough to experiment with wines that might be slightly fuller and softer than those they would drink with European food; as European 'classics' often tend to vanish beneath the waves of flavour found in good Thai cuisine.

    Reds tend to be even harder to match, but Giggling Squid’s list favours softer, fruitier styles that complement Thai dishes. Mouth-drying tannins and high acidity, such as those found in classic French wines like Bordeaux, are a “big no-no”; the tannin clashes with any chilli, heat or sweetness in the dish.

    Following extensive taste trials, Quaff has introduced fruit-driven New World wines seem to work well with an, “easy going” tempranillo from Spain an Argentinian Malbec which is proving especially popular with regulars.

    Thai Holiday Competition

    Giggling Squid has also revealed that it is to run a competition to win a fabulous holiday to Thailand including return flights and accommodation. Details will be announced on the company’s website
    and tweeted to its Twitter followers
    via @GigglingSquid.



    Widely regarded as one the world’s greatest authorities on oriental cooking, legendary chef KEN HOM has agreed to host a rare public Masterclass in support and celebration of the launch of The Oriental Culinary Institute (OCI) on Friday 28 November 2014 - a new venture from School of Wok.

    Teaching the art of Oriental and Asian cuisine in the heart of London’s Covent Garden, School of Wok was founded and run by TV chef Jeremy Pang. To complement the School’s popular consumer courses appealing to both budding chefs and casual cooks alike, the OCI aims to create something different, appealing to those who want to learn new skills or perfect the more sophisticated and lesser known cooking methods of Asian cuisine.

    The Oriental Culinary Institute has therefore been set up to specialise in accredited professional training, for those with a dream to maybe run a street food café, those looking to change careers and train professionally as a chef, or simply those who want to learn the secrets behind the doors of a dim sum kitchen.

    The OCI will provide three-week courses in Oriental and Asian cookery, as well as private consultancy, chef training and bespoke one-to-one learning in a professional environment and state-of-the-art kitchen. It will also provide the understanding and focus on kitchen organisation and preparation in a commercial environment, essential for any professional chef.

    This one-off Ken Hom Masterclass on 28 November runs between 6 and 9 pm and is priced at £250 per person inclusive of all materials, food and drink. The Masterclass will offer those who secure a place a chance to learn from Ken Hom’s expertise in a hands-on class environment, as well as celebrating School of Wok’s new venture in the launch of their professional training school.

    The Oriental Culinary Institute and School of Wok are located at 61 Chandos Place, Covent Garden, London WC2N 4HG Tel: 020 7240 8818


    also SEREN EVANS-CHARRINGTON – FOOD HISTORIAN Tune in Live all day Tuesday 11th November 2014.



    Matt is currently one of the presenters on Channel 4’s Food Unwrapped, where he travels the world with co-presenters Jimmy Doherty and Kate Quilton to discover where our everyday food originates and how it is produced. He also guest presents Saturday Kitchen on BBC1 (when James Martin is away), and regularly appears on the show as a studio chef. He can also be seen on BBC2’s Great British Menu. Other TV presenting includes UKTV’s Market Kitchen and Channel 4's Drop Down Menu with Gizzi Erskine.


    Seren Evans Charrington Food Historian
    Seren Evans-Charrington is a Food Historian and will help support the campaign by sharing her own knowledge and research on ingredients found in the home today compared to 40 years ago.






    Despite Britain being considered a culinary melting pot, research released today by Kenwood reveals that while Brits may have a taste for foreign foods, the majority of us think we don’t have the time or skill to cook them.

    Although foreign cuisines rank ahead of traditional British fare as our favourite food, a third of Britons can only cook two (24%) or fewer (8%) international dishes and one in ten (9%) can’t cook any.

    Instead, over a quarter of us (27%) resort to pre-made sauces when cooking global cuisines, and one in four (25%) rely on takeaways or restaurants to get their foreign food fix. This taste for having international classics cooked for us means that, as a nation, we have £240m* worth of unused herbs and spices going to waste in our cupboards.

    In fact, despite spices historically being considered a highly prized commodity - and far too valuable to waste - half of Britain’s herbs and spices are now being left unused at the back of the cupboard, with 13% of the nation hoarding spices that are more than four years old, and 6% keeping spices for more than six years – long past their shelf life.

    Top 10 most used herbs and spices in Britain:
    1. Basil (44%)
    6. Rosemary (28%)
    2. Chilli (41%)
    7. Paprika (22%)
    3. Oregano (30%)
    8. Parsey (19%)
    4. Coriander (30%)
    9. Cinnamon (19%)
    5. Ginger (30%)
    10. Thyme (17%)
    Our lack of global gastronomic knowledge also shines through in the research: Over half of us (62%) have cooked an Indian curry at home, but very few ever make use of the traditional Indian spices. Just 15% add turmeric, 10% mustard seeds, and a mere 2% have tried cooking with cardamom.

    The research also shows that 60% of us have no idea that gazpacho comes from Spain, and 30% aren’t sure what a falafel is, with 7% even confusing it with baklava (a rich, sweet pastry made of layers of filo, chopped nuts and honey).

    Joining us in the studio to discuss the research is TV Chef Matt Tebbutt along with Food Historian Seren Evans-Charrington.

    Listen in on various Radio Stations

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    Thursday 13th November 2014

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  • Rosemary Shragers Recipes from Watford Market


    Please see below the recipes that we being demonstrated by Celebrity Chef Rosemary Shrager at Watfords New Market Re-Launch 31st October 2014.

    1. Duck breast in pomegranate glaze

    For the duck
    2 Duck breasts

    For the glaze
    150 ml pomegranate syrup
    80ml soy sauce
    3 tbl Port
    3 tbl mirin

    To prepare the duck breast score the skin and take off any bad sinews, Put the duck skin side down in a cold pan heat up slowly an cook for about 5 minutes turn over for a further 3 minutes or until cooked pink. Remove and allow to rest.

    Guinea Fowl, Pancetta and Herbs with Peal Barley

    Serves 4

    Ingredients: 4 plump guinea fowl breast
    2 sprigs rosemary, chopped
    2 tablespoons thyme, leafs chopped
    4 tablespoons chopped pancetta or dry cured streaky bacon
    Juice of ½ lemon
    Olive oil, salt and pepper

    Ingredients for pearl barley: 100g pearl barley washed
    40g unsalted butter
    1 shallot finely chopped
    1 small carrot finely chopped
    1 celery stick finely choped
    300ml chicken stock
    1tbsp parsley finely chopped
    2 tablespoons of chives
    12 seedless black grapes cut into quarters
    100ml double cream
    Salt and pepper

    Garnish: Chopped parsley
    Oven 200˚ C


    First fry the pancetta and add to the chopped herbs. Season and add the lemon juice and a splash of extra virgin olive oil. In the same pan brown the guinea fowl skin side down. Take 4 double layer 30cm squares of tin foil. Rub the guinea fowl breasts with salt and pepper, divide the herbs and scatter around the guinea fowl in the packet of foil, and then seal. Put into the oven for 20 to 25 minutes approximately, depending on the size.

    To make the pearl barley put the butter into a medium saucepan and add the vegetables. Soften for 2 minutes then add the washed pearl barley and half the stock. Simmer for 30 minutes to allow the liquid to absorb. Now add half the remaining stock, simmer till reduced, add the rest of the stock, simmer again until all has absorbed. Next add the cream, herbs and grapes. Cook for a further 15 minutes, season well. Total time should be 1 hour. Serve the guinea fowl on the pearl barley risotto. Garnish with the chopped parsley.

    Risotto with Pears, Hazelnuts and Taleggio

    Serves 4


    360g. Carnaroli rice
    50g. butter
    1 small onion
    1 l. chicken stock
    200ml. white wine
    3 sprigs thyme
    1 branch rosemary
    8 sage leaves
    50g. hazelnuts, shelled
    1 pear
    160g. Taleggio
    60g. parmesan, grated
    salt, pepper


    Melt 30 g. butter in a saucepan, soften the finely chopped onion then stir in the rice. When it has absorbed the butter add the wine and boil hard to evaporate the alcohol then add enough hot stock to cover. Put half the herbs in the pan without cutting them. Stir and cook, adding stock as necessary, for 15 minutes then season to taste. Meanwhile coarsely chop the nuts and finely chop the rest of the herbs. Cut the pear into eight and remove the core without removing the skin. Take the crust off the Taleggio then cut the cheese into small pieces and add it to the risotto just before it finishes cooking. Remove from the heat and cover it for 5 minutes before serving. Heat the rest of the butter in a pan wide enough to hold the pear in one layer and cook on each side for 2 minutes. Divide the risotto between 4 plates and top with the pear, nuts and herbs. Serve with parmesan.

    Seared Pork Chops and Polenta with Cabbage and Parsnips

    Serves 4

    4 pork chops
    Salt and pepper
    Olive oil
    60g butter

    For the Polenta:
    800ml boiling water
    125g polenta Bramata
    ½ tablespoon salt
    40g butter unsalted
    40g parmesan grated

    For the Cabbage and Parsnip:
    1 savoy cabbage
    1 large parsnip
    3 tablespoons olive oil
    2 apples Granny Smiths peeled
    1 garlic clove finely chopped
    60g butter
    Salt and pepper

    To garnish: 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

    Oven 200C


    To make the polenta boil the water in a large stainless steel pan, trickle the polenta in, whisking all the time. Add the salt and stir for 10 minutes. Cover the pan and simmer for 10 minutes then stir often and when the polenta leaves the side of the pan cleanly stir in the butter and cheese and remove from the heat.

    Remove the cabbage leaves and cut out the central core, pile the leaves on top of each other and shred finely. Cook in boiling salted water for 1 minute then refresh, squeeze out all the water, and set aside. Cut the parsnip into ½ cm cubes and fry in olive oil until brown, put on a plate until needed. Cut the apples into ½ cm cubes and fry with the garlic, put on a plate until needed. When ready to serve heat up the cabbage, parsnip and apple in the butter and season well.

    Meanwhile season the chops, heat a frying pan to a medium heat, put a little oil into the pan and fry the chops for 4 to 5 minutes each side just until firm, not overcooked. Add a little butter to coat.

    Serve the polenta immediately with the pork chops, cabbage and parsnip, and garnish with parsley.

    Simple Sauted Curried Chicken with Coconut Milk

    Serves 4
    Ingredients: 4 chicken breasts, cut into 3 cm dice
    1 dessert spoon curry powder (home made)
    1 small red chilli, finely chopped
    1 garlic clove, crushed
    1 lemon grass strip
    75g olive oil
    250 ml coconut milk
    2 tablespoon nampla (Thai fish sauce)
    120g salted chashew nuts (or peanuts)
    Bunch coriander
    Salt and pepper

    For the sticky rice: 300g jasmine rice
    600ml water


    Start by rubbing the curry powder into the chicken and season with the salt, chilli and crushed garlic. Put the olive oil into a sautéing pan, preferably non stick. Add the chicken and cook until its brown on all sides. Now add the coconut milk with the lemon grass, turn the heat to simmer and cook for 3 minutes, now add the nampla and nuts and cook for a further 1 minute.

    Serve with sticky rice and garnish with coriander.
    To cook the rice wash the rice well. Put into a saucepan and cover with the water, bring to the boil then turn to simmer. Put the lid on and cook for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and allow to sit for a further 10 minutes.

  • A hunt is on for the next local food hero


    Throughout November, chefs all over the county are taking part in a competition to showcase two of the region’s finest products - Fenland Celery and Newmarket Sausages - in the first Cambridgeshire ‘Celerybration’ awards.


    The purpose of the month-long competition is to recognise and celebrate the Protected Geographic Indication (PGI) status that has been awarded to Fenland Celery and Newmarket Sausages for their quality and provenance.

    Anthony Gardiner of G’s Fresh, who is organising the competition in conjunction with Powters Sausages of Newmarket, says: “Not many counties can boast two PGI status products so we think it’s high time we celebrate this.”

    Each dish will be judged for its taste, presentation and the story behind the idea, by an anonymous panel. The winner will receive a trophy, be hailed an eminent PGI Hero and be placed firmly on the regional food map.

    Grant Powter, who produces Newmarket Sausages, says: “We are encouraging everyone in the county to get involved. Whether you’re a chef who wants to raise their profile or a consumer who can support our celebration of local produce by ordering the new dishes on chef’s menus.”

    Upon entering, chefs will be provided free Fenland Celery and Newmarket Sausages for a month. The competition is open to chefs in Cambridgeshire, surrounding counties and Greater London.

    Everyone can find out who is taking part on Twitter by following @PGIHeroes and using hashtag #PGIHero to view live updates.

    Chefs that would like to enter the competition can find more information and download an entry form here:
    or contact

    For more information about Powters:

    For more information about G’s Fresh:

  • Jersey Restaurant Bohemia Ranked as One of Britain’s Best in New Sunday Times 100 Top Restaurants

    The Club Hotel & Spa - Bohemia Restarant

    Bohemia Restaurant in Jersey has been named one of the best restaurants in the UK in yesterday’s The Sunday Times Top 100 Food List, 19 October 2014.
    The restaurant’s success was made even sweeter as the guide also awarded Bohemia the ‘6th best pudding in the UK’.

    The Michelin star restaurant is the only eatery in the Channel Islands to make it into the top 100, listed alongside Heston Blumenthal’s The Fat Duck, The Ledbury, The Waterside Inn, and Le Gavroche, firmly cementing both the restaurant’s and Jersey’s status as one of the world’s top foodie destinations.

    Steve Smith, Head Chef, Bohemia Restaurant, Jersey

    Head Chef Steve Smith said: “The whole team at Bohemia is ecstatic. To receive this accolade really is a testament to our hard work and commitment to delivering the finest standard of food.”

    The Sunday Times Food List, published in full yesterday, ranks Britain’s top 100 restaurants by the quality of their food. It is compiled together with the Harden’s restaurant guide and based on 70,000 reviews from more than 6,000 consumers.

    The celebratory vibe at the hotel is even greater as this announcement comes weeks after the restaurant was awarded 4AA Rosettes, and a top score in the Good Food Guide 2015.

    Head Chef Steve Smith was one of the youngest chefs in the country to achieve a Michelin star 10 years ago, at the age of just 24.

    Steve Smith has created a truly outstanding dining experience with his ingredient and flavour driven tasting menus. Bohemia Bar & Restaurant boasts a stellar reputation for its first rate cuisine, placing it firmly on the gastronomic map as a food-lover’s destination.

    Situated on the ground floor of The Club Hotel & Spa, Bohemia has been Jersey’s finest dining establishment since opening its doors in April 2004.

    Bohemia Restaurant, Green Street, St. Helier, Jersey JE2 4UH, Channel Islands
    For reservations please call: 01534 880 588 or visit

  • 200 Chefs, 200 recipes 10 regions £200,000 to be raised by Christmas!

    Great British Cook Book

    Michael Caines MBE, Rick Stein OBE, Anna Hansen MBE, Galton Blackiston, Richard Corrigan, the charities, PR companies, project team, 200 chefs and restaurants in total from the UK are asking for your support.

    Together we aim to raise £200,000 for Macmillan Cancer Support Trust and Hospitality Action just in time for Christmas!

    It costs MacMillan £8 for an assessment pack that enables a cancer Clinical Nurse Specialist to assess and care plan the needs of 100 people with cancer. £52,720 could pay for a Macmillan nurse for a year, helping people living with cancer and their families receive essential medical, practical and emotional support.

    With £100 Hospitality Action could cover a month of heating for one of their beneficiaries who is suffering from a life threatening illness. £2,500 would buy a mobility scooter for a disabled beneficiary, giving them back their independence

    We want to hit the 20,000 download target we’ve set to provide so much more!

    By doing so we will be showcasing some of the finest culinary talent, restaurants, home grown and reared produce in the world let alone Great Britain! All of which culminates into 200 tantilising tasty culinary delights from all four corners of the UK.

    The GBCB will be seen by over 10 million on Twitter alone. This is before the regional, national media and GBCB support campaign kicks in on the build up too; the GBCB E-Book Download Friday on December 19th.

    All proceeds from the £12 e-book download go to the charities and will be split equally. On the download day we want to make A LOT of noise; are you up for getting involved?

    Keep the evening of November 20th free the venue is fit for a king, there’s no other place to be than in Nottingham! It’s a national PR launch not be missed.

    If you’re unable to make it you’ll no doubt hear about it, see the amazing food online and taste it once you’ve downloaded your copy.

    For invitations, press enquiries and to join the mailing list email the team on press@thegreatbritishcookbook

    For sponsorship contact

    Phone number 07837964005
    Twitter @GBCookBook
    FB The Great British Cook Book

  • Celebrity Chef Rosemary Shrager at the Grand opening of Watford’s new Market


    Above: Celebrity Chef Rosemary Shrager.

    Watford Market’s grand opening event on Friday 31 October will feature celebrity chef Rosemary Shrager in a series of fun cookery demonstrations.

    With five demonstrations throughout the day from 11am, Rosemary will use a range of produce bought from market traders.

    Elected Mayor Dorothy Thornhill said: “I’m looking forward to rolling up my sleeves and joining in one of the cookery demos. I know Rosemary is a firm believer in supporting local suppliers and produce, and I’m sure she will be delighted with what’s on offer at Watford Market.”

    Rosemary Shrager said: “Market shopping is a completely different experience; there is so much choice and variety which is great for me when I am thinking about what to cook. Traders will also happily share their insights and expertise, and chat – something that doesn’t always happen in a supermarket.”

    Should the cookery demos leave you feeling hungry, the range of places to eat at the new market is amazing: sushi prepared by an ex-Nobu chef; there’s a stall selling Latin American cuisine and of course it’s the best place for a bacon sandwich and a cup of tea.

    For the children, there will be fun Halloween activities from 11am until 5pm; including a scary Market trail; Halloween craft workshops and spooky dancers – brought to you from the team at Watford Museum.

    Sophie Wood, marketing manager at TCM said, “We’re looking forward to launching our Wheel of Fortune competition in which customers get a prize every time they buy! Traders will be giving out tokens for a spin of the Wheel. Prizes range from a £1000 holiday to family ice skating tickets, meals at local restaurants plus New Watford Market merchandise and vouchers. The Wheel will be open from 12 – 2 daily until 15 November”.

    With regular opening hours of Tuesday to Saturday, 9am until 5pm – the new Market is located in the centre of the town; accessible from the High Street near the flyover and from Beechen Grove, near Clarendon Road.
    For more information, visit
    or follow them on @watfordmarket on Twitter.

  • Welsh Museums Festival ‘History of Baking’

    Cardiff Story museum

    Welsh Museums Festival ‘History of Baking’ Talk at the Cardiff Story Museum


    Celebrity Food Historian: Seren Evans-Charrington

    To celebrate the first ever Welsh Museums Festival (4th – 12th October) and to build anticipation for the first ever Cardiff Story Cake Off in November, on Monday 6th October, food historian Seren Evans-Charrington will be giving a very special talk about the history of baking at the Cardiff Story Museum. Armed with historic food utensils and samples to taste, Seren will be providing baking and cake lovers & enthusiasts with an insight into the nation’s favourite past time.

    Museum Manager, Victoria Rogers, explains how this talk came about –
    “With the nation gripped with Great British Bake Off fever, we wanted to do something special to mark the first ever Welsh Museums Festival week which is all about celebrating the uniqueness of museums and the fact museums offer something for everyone no matter what their interests. We are using the talk to launch our first ever Cardiff Story Cake Off which is happening on Saturday 1st November.

    It will be £2 to enter a cake – there will be three categories – under 16s, adults and professionals. We will have a panel of judges and of course we will be giving brownie points for people who bake with a historical twist. People attending our History of Baking talk should be able to get some tips from Seren. We encourage all Cardiffians to get baking and to think what taste of history they could recreate!

    Seren Evans-Charrington will be on BBC Radio Wales 2:30pm with Eleri Sion on 6th October. Seren will be giving a talk that evening on the history of cake at Cardiff Story Museum.


    Lucy Cruickshank

    Nuffield New Zealand scholar Lucy Cruickshank has been in the UK for the past fortnight connecting with the UK's leading dairy sheep farmers, sheep milk processors and retailers to better understand the industry globally as part of her research project titled 'International Sheep Milk Production & Marketing' .
    "From what I can see demand is growing quickly for sheep milk products here in the UK and farmers are carefully managing relationships with gourmet niche sheep cheese, sheep milk yoghurt, ice-cream and butter producers to cope with 20% year on year increases"

    Photo 3 East Friesian - Orchid Meadows

    "The dairy sheep industry is well established in Europe and the Middle East where some of the world's finest ewe's milk cheeses have been produced for centuries. In countries like NZ, Australia, UK and the USA the industry is very young but growing rapidly due to the increase in demand for gourmet food and also from the lactose intolerant market"

    Whilst in the UK Lucy has worked on farms across the UK.

    Photo 2 Simon Stott

    “Two of the most exciting operators are Orchid Meadows in Dorset and Sheep Milk UK in Preston. Orchid Meadows are milking 1200 ewes and selling the organic milk primarily to Woodlands Organic Sheep Yoghurt. Another operator that excited Cruickshank was Simon Stott who has set up Sheep Milk UK Coop with 9 local sheep farmers, supplying 19 customers. Stott was Sheep Farmer of the year 2011 and his breeding, milk volumes and hygiene are second to none”.

    Photo 1 Lucy Cruickshank Milking

    Cruickshank has also met with Sarah Gayton from Farmers on Film and Chris Horricks from I Love Media City UK and is encouraging the sheep dairy association to work with these professionals to help share this amazing product with consumers.

    In NZ there are currently just five established dairy Sheep farmers including what Lucy believes is one of the world's largest scale independent producers of sheep milk products - Blue River Dairy who has 28 0000 sheep and is milking 18000.

    Photo 3 Sheep Milk UK Tanker

    NZ's large Landcorp farming group with 850 000 sheep have recently announced its interest in the sheep dairy industry.

    The UK is one of many stops on her 6 month research trip around the world. Other countries include Switzerland, Italy, France, USA, Turkey, Israel, China, Taiwan, Netherlands, Australia & Qatar.
    Nutritionally sheep milk is considered to be superior in many ways to other milk forms.  Research has shown that sheep milk takes half an hour to process versus cows milk which takes 4.5hrs. Sheep milk is most similar to human breast milk making infant formula a big market opportunity.

    Lucy will be returning to the UK in November this year to present her preliminary Nuffield findings to the British Sheep Dairy Association.

    To follows Lucy’s Nuffield trip see

  • ASL Celebrity Chefs - Big Welcome to Jodie Kidd

    Jodie Kidd Masterchef


    2014 has seen Jodie swap the catwalk for the kitchen, taking part in this year's Celebrity Masterchef. With flair, tenacity and a lot of skill, Jodie was pipped to the post and finished runner up in a gruelling and emoional final. Exciting projects lie ahead and later this year Jodie will host the Equestrian season on CNN International as well as hosting the Classic Car Show alongside Quentin Willson. Having completed a campaign with Cravendale for Sports Relief and launched a leather range with Debrett's , Jodie now focuses commercially on her partnership with sports lifestyle brand Green Lamb and her golf clothing range collaboration.

    Jodie is a unique example of someone who has fused the worlds of designer fashion and glamorous sports. On the catwalk she is a leading supermodel, and off it she plays polo to a high level and golf off a handicap of 18. Jodie has enjoyed a successful career as a high octane Maserati racing driver, competing at some of Europe's most prestigious racing circuits in the Maserati Trofeo Series. She has a love of speed and beautiful cars and there is no better way to enjoy that than behind the wheel of an Italian super car!

    As an international model, Jodie has travelled the world shooting high end fashion campaigns, lending her image to luxury brands. Following a hiatus from modelling, during which Jodie concentrated on her racing career and TV opportunities, 2013 saw her sign to esteemed modelling agency, NEXT Models, and embrace the fashion world once again. Already she has walked in the Moschino show during Milan Fashion Week, and the response to her modelling comeback has been hugely positive, with numerous magazine covers and high press interest.

    Read More about JODIE KIDD Here:

  • Farmers on Film Festival at the Worlds Largest Cheese Show - The International Cheese Awards 29th July

    Celebrity TV Chef Alan Coxon, UKs Food, Drink and Tourism Ambassador headlines first ever Farmers on Film Festival At the Worlds Largest Cheese Show - The International Cheese Awards 29th July

    Alan Coxon, the UKs Food, Drink and Tourism Ambassador will be headlining an exciting new 'Farmers on Film' festival to be held at the worlds largest cheese show in the world at the International Cheese Awards on the 29th July 2014. The festival aims to celebrate the Olympic legacy of the Podium award winning concept 'Farmers on Film' and the United Nations Food and Agricultural Organisations Year of Family Farming, by starting a discussion on how we can use film and social media to link the public to the food they are eating to who and where it was produced on smart mobile devices.

    The festival is packed full of industry experts from the film, tourism, farming and social media industry, including James Berresford the CEO of the Visit England who will talk about the value of our Countryside to tourism, Nick Beech from Creative England, on using your farm as a movie set and Barbara Hughes of the Women in Food and Farming Dairy Committee on the importance of linking the consumer to the producer. Welsh tourism and food will be firmly out on the map with TV star Gareth Wyn Jones and Alwyn from Celticos the inspiring tourist guide of North Wales taking guest to stunning food producers and rural Welsh countryside. International guest Fiona Lake will talk about the changing nature of Australian tourists to the UK and Lorna Sixsmith from Ireland will explain how she uses social media in blog on 'Would You Marry a Farmer?'.

    The festival is so proud to have received a number of dedicated film messages for the event. This includes a special dedicated film message from the United Nations Food and Farming Organisation for the UN Year of Family Farming, a hugely inspirational interview with Elliot Grove, the founder of the Raindance Film Festival and two from Australia from social media expert Trevor Young and the awesome Mick Russell who has started farmers on film downunder. The festival also cannot wait to hear the views of the farming industry professionals on this concept, including, Rob Harrison Chair of NFU Dairy Board, Millie Wastie inspirational young farmer and Charles Tassell one of the founding member of Agrichat and Rachel Marston of BBC Lambing Live on this concept. Chris Horrocks from 'I Love Media City' will explain why media is so important for farming industry and James Rae from @Lovedoozza on engaging use of twitter along side #teamdairy Jim Franklin who uses twitter everyday and all day to communicate about all issue to do with farming.

    The whole line up is awesome and can be seen at and the event is free you just need to register
    The results of the cheese factor competition will also be announced at the event!

    The day is being filmed for a documentary about the festival and we would welcome as many people as possible to come forward and get their views on film please. Which will be part of our feed back to the UN FAO on the outcomes of the UN Year of Family Farming. We would love to see as many people as possible at the event and being part of the conversation!

    Sarah Gayton
    Farmers on Film Festival Director
    07903 155858
    Twitter @farmersonfilm

    If you want more information please go to:

    - Website

    - Farmers Review blog

    - ICheese Awards

    - Film clips Sarah Gayton, founder of farmers on film at Media City

    - Chris Horrocks from I Love Media City

    - Ernie from Gurnsleigh Cheese

    explaining why you should get involved!

  • Farmers On Film Trade Show - 29th July 2014 in Nantwich, Cheshire


    The aim of this festival is to start a discussion on how we use film, social media and smart phones to link the public to the farmer. To instantly see where their foods come from, who produced it and where it was produced. To also showcase what our rural areas have to offer for rural tourism. It is bringing different sectors together and it is hoped that it will be drive discussion, creativity and innovation in this whole area.

    This is a FREE event however you must please register in advance and the details are given at the bottom of the page how to do this and please regester for a trade pass to the show which is free, just click This festival is going to take place in the cookery demonstration theatre at the International Cheese Show on 29th July 2014. We have an inspirational line up of guest speakers and panel members to date with others to be added once confirmed. It will start at 9.30am and will go till 1.00pm with workshops after this time. The festival schedule is just being worked out now.

    From film and tv we have:

    Elliot Grove, Inspirational Founder of Raindance Film Festival @Raindance@elliot_grove via skype

    Alan Coxon the amazing TV Celebrity, Food Archaeologist and Great British Culinary Ambassador@alancoxon

    James Fair, Director of Film 72 Project and senior lecturer at Staffordshire University. James is very engaging, creative and pushes the boundaries of film making and was the original lecturer to work with the students on farmers on film @72project

    Rachel Martson the very engaging star of the BBC 2 Lambing Live program @staylambinglive

    Gareth Wyn Jones The Charismatic Welsh Hill Farmer of BBC The Hill Farmer Series @1GarethWynJones

    Nick Beech from Creative England talking about film and tv set locations for rural and farm buildings. Highly exciting talk!

    Mick Russell from Australia, via short film with Trevor Young, who was inspired by Farmers on Film and successfully crowd-funded for equipment to start filming @mickrussell_ @farmersonfilmAU

    Kirsty Tait Carnegie UK Project Officer who will be showing new film on Growing Livelihoods @kirstycarneige

    From the tourism sector we have:

    Speaker from Visit Britain on the Great British Countryside Campaign @Visit Britain
    James Beresford Very lovely CEO of Visit England @VisitEngland

    Alwyn, the energetic and passionate Director of Celticos who is working hard with Gareth to give guests a stunning taste of the North Wales
    An Award Winning Chef from Wales a wonderful place to visit

    From social media, innovation and networking sector we have:

    James Rae, a stunning social media influencer using twitter to connect with people @lovedoozza

    Steve Wileman, from the very active and forward thinking South Staffordshire College, will be talking about his passion for the augmented reality technology.

    John Whittall from the Innovation Voucher scheme @innovate_uk
    The unstoppable Trevor Young from Australia, author of ‘Micro-Domination’ a book to change your live an your business around through social media, is creating a short film for us to play at the event with Mick Russell @trevoryoung

    Chris from I love Media City UK a gentleman that understands the power of social media to creates opportunities and has works out of media city in Salford, one very helpful person @IloveMCUK

    Andy Richards from Chef Radio will be doing interviews throughout the day and a full 2 days will be broadcasted on chef radio during the 7th & 8th August 2014

    From the farming sector who use social media, we have:

    Rob Harrison Chair of the NFU Dairy Board@robharrison37

    Milly Wastie former NFYFC chairlady and inspirational young lady bringing the female touch to the farming world, 2013 @milliewastie

    Charles Tassel stunning co-founder of @AgrichatUK and has his finger on the pulse of how social media is impacting on the farming industry @FarminKent

    Jim Franklin #teamdairy #ladycows Jim uses a number of soical media platforms to effectively communicate with public and farming community and recently explained this on BBC Midlands Today @milkmaker73

    Rural photo tourism journalists and bloggers we have:

    Inspirational Lorna Sixsmith blogger and author of ‘Would you Marry a Farmer? Coming all the way from Southern Ireland talking her book, blogging and crowd funding, she will have you captivated! @IrishFarmerette

    The amazing Fiona Lake from Australia, who blogs, creates stunning books on rural Australia and travel books @FionaLakeAus

    Young professionals who have been inspired by farmer on film

    Denise Smith, key member of the Staffordshire University Podium Award Winning Farmers on Film students who filmed the Minister for Agriculture in London and Co-Director of the Festival

    Chef Steve, one of the most up and coming young Chefs of the National Trust who is Head Chef at Calke Abby in Derbyshire. He is passionate about using local in season UK produce and showing with public how to cook with it!

    The inspirational Nigel Akehurst, founder of Indie Farmer bringing the stories of independent farmers to peoples social media world! @IndieFarm@nigelakehurst

    Founder of Farmers on Film

    Sarah Gayton, founder of ‘Farmers on Film’ and Film Festival Director @farmersonfilm

    This is going to be one stunning conversation that will keep going way after the event has finished!

    Please get contact us to attend the festival by any of these methods:

    Email –
    Twitter – @farmersonfilm
    Facebook – Farmers-on-Film-Feeding-the-Olympic-Dream
    Phone 07903 155858 leave message & will phone you back!
    Text 07903 155858
    If phoning from international +44 (0) 7903 155858
    If you would like to write email and I will send address
    Please just let me know what you do, why you would like to attend and where you come from in UK or world you come from.

  • Brighton restaurant claims Best in Britain Awards

    Brighton’s Indian Summer restaurant has been named among the best the country alongside London Michelin-starred eateries in this year’s Best in Britain Awards (BIBA), organised by the Federation of Specialist Restaurants and judged by Mood Food magazine.

    "Indian Summer has already been named as one of the top 100 Indian restaurants by the Cobra Good Curry Guide, so to be on an even shorter list in such exalted company as Michelin-starred venues like Tamarind, Benares and Quilion is a fantastic recognition," said Indian Summer co owner Minesh Agnihotri.

    The Best in Britain Awards originated in 1999 to support the growth and development of ever higher standards in the ethnic restaurant sector, giving annual recognition to those restaurants Mood Food magazine feels to be “exceptional”, according to its editor Peter Grove.

    Also on this year’s top 50 list are TV chef Cyrus Todiwala’s Cafe Spice Namaste, Vivek Singh’s Cinnamon Club, the ornate La Porte des Indes, Cinnamon Club, Gymkhana, Bombay Brasserie and The Ambrette.

    Indian Summer edged out several other famous Indian eateries, including London’s Chor Bizarre, Eriki, Gaylord and Veeraswamy, which received ‘High Recommended’ accolades.

    Full details on the awards at:

    On Saturday 26th July Indian Summer will be hosting a masquerade for EPIC charity providing palliative car for terminally ill cancer patients, with live music from the EPIC 80s band, “the south coast’s finest ‘80s tribute band”, Indian Summer street food, cocktail bar, ice cream stall, masked photos, charity auction and raffle. The event promises to have some amazing auction and raffle prizes.

    The black tie & ball gown masked event will be held at the Brighton & Hove Sixth Form College (BHASVIC) from 7.30pm until midnight. Tickets cost £18, which includes a welcome drink.

    Tickets available direct from the restaurant and the Indian Summer website:

  • DFV Dig For Victory Show 1940's themed festival in Somerset 5th & 6th July

    Dig For Victory Show 2014

    The Dig for Victory Show is a 1940's themed festival being held in the summer of 2014 at the North Somerset Showground near Bristol. Our vision is to provide our local community with an affordable, family orientated weekend event to explore this turbulent yet thought-provoking period in our recent history. We will bring history alive and the generations together with a sense of nostalgia and pride - to learn, remember and have fun.

    The event is in its fourth consecutive year attracting more than 8,000 people in 2013. We are working with local schools and businesses in addition to supporting The Army Benevolent Fund and the Children’s Hospice South West.

    Come and celebrate the 'Best of British' and life in the 40s with re-enactors demonstrating what life was like in wartime Britain, an exhibition of over 25 original restored wartime vehicles, veterans sharing their stories, traditional craft demonstrations, locally-grown produce stalls, vintage clothing, farmyard animals, traditional fairground rides, a children's trail and dont miss Seren Evans-Charrington doing her 1940's cookery demos on both days


    Above: Food Historian - Seren Evans-Charrington

    This event is organised by the Shopland Collection and the Western Branch of the Invicta Military Vehicle Preservation Society, with the support of the North Somerset Agricultural Society and The Blitz Buddies.

  • The Pleasure of Preserving is Set for Victory


    Above: Food Historian, Seren Evans-Charrington

    Seren Evans-Charrington will be launching her latest book, ‘The Pleasure of Preserving’ at the 1940’s show, Dig For Victory on the 5th and 6th July 2014. The book contains new and old recipes, including family wartime recipes. It looks at the history of various methods of preserving and provides handy hints on how to make perfect preserves. The book contains guidance on achieving the perfect pickled onion, drying mushrooms, making jams and marmalades alongside some more unusual recipes.

    Seren has won many accolades for her preserves including scooping a bronze this year at ‘The Worlds Original Marmalade Awards’ for her Bergamot Lemon, Quince and Grapefruit Marmalade. In her latest book, she imparts her tips on preserving seasonal gluts, achieving the perfect set in strawberry jam and a troubleshooting guide to jams, marmalades, chutneys and pickles.

    The Pleasure of Preserving

    The author’s passion for preserving is evident in the pages of this quirky book and in places it could be described as, ‘Fifty Shades of Marmalade’! ‘As soon as you begin to make marmalade it is therapy for the senses, the smell of sticky, bittersweet orange marmalade will linger in every corner of the kitchen,’ writes Seren. ‘To breathe is to inhale the rich pleasures of unadulterated gluttony. It is all you can do to surrender to the pleasure that is marmalade making.’

    Packed with images from the authors recipe scrapbooks and written with a wealth of experience this is a must read for anyone interested in the ancient art of preserving.

    Notes for Editors

    The book launch will take place at Dig for Victory Show on 5th and 6th July 2014 held at North Somerset, where Seren will be demonstrating authentic wartime recipes including wartime mock marmalade and some included in the book.

    Book signings will be given throughout Wales in August and September 2014

    Seren is happy to provide interviews, extracts and photographs.

    Visit - Contact:


    Charleston, SC – Local Veteran and well-known Chef Frisco Thumbtzen has been an icon in the Charleston culinary scene for many years.

    He is best known for his award winning fusion of lowcountry and Cajun/Creole cuisine. His cuisine has been highlighted in the City Paper and the Post & Courier. Chef Frisco won awards from Yelp, Urbanspoon and has been featured on Charleston Culinary Tours.

    From a former restaurant owner, and a caterer to showcasing his skills in some of the areas popular culinary hot spots and events, the next big step for Chef Frisco is the official beginning of his Kickstarter fundraiser for his one-of-a-kind food truck! Campaigning to raise funds for Charleston’s first Caribbean Cajun Creole food truck is a reflection of Chef Frisco’s multi-cultural family.

    His culinary fusions hit the Charleston market in 2008 through his restaurant, Cajun Kountry Kitchen Café on Remount Road in North Charleston. It was a success for a few years and a high ranked tourist attraction until crime and police clean ups altered the growth of the restaurant.

    Chef Frisco was forced to shut down but continued to cater.
    For the past three years many of his followers have requested that he open another restaurant. However, after helping a friend who owns a food truck, he became passionate about having his own.

    “My truck will be the only truck featuring my form of Lowcountry, Caribbean, and Cajun Creole fusion cuisine. My cuisine is family friendly, not overly spicy or hot and very well-known in the Charleston area…I’m ready and excited to bring it back,” stated Chef Frisco. The popular online fundraising site Kickstarter appealed to him as the best resource to reach his fans, family, friends and anyone with a generous spirit.

    Most people know Chef Frisco as the smiling chef with the Cajun straw hat. However, underneath the hat and the smile lies an untold story of a military veteran. After serving many years in the U.S. Navy, he was honorably discharged due to disability. He struggled without an income and no one wanted to hire him only having military experience with disabilities.

    He lost his house, cars, marriage and hope. He became homeless for a few months until his cousin in Atlanta, GA took him in and everything began to change. Chef Frisco rediscovered his passion for food, worked in a few restaurants and enrolled in the Art Institute of Atlanta’s culinary school. He graduated and began his career as a chef. He worked in notable venues such as Disney resorts and with the U.S. Olympics before he migrated to Charleston.

    Chef Frisco deserves to have a successful fundraiser because he is a giver. Unseen to his restaurant customers, behind the scenes he was training culinary students, hiring people who were unemployable and feeding countless numbers of the hungry and homeless. When the demand was more than what he could handle he partnered with a local church to offer food and many other services. Gumbo and cornbread paired with brotherly love comforted numerous hungry souls.

    Chef Frisco continues to practice generosity. But, now it is time for the community to help him achieve a veteran’s dream job of owning a food truck. You can help Chef Frisco by clicking on the following link:

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