The Wilderness Festival is my kind of festival

blanc2The love the mob feels for Raymond Blanc is remarkable. He emerges from the back of the Banqueting Tent at the Wilderness Festival looking, as usual, eerily like Dudley Moore but in chef whites and the crowd immediately goes bananas.

He becomes the epicentre of a horde, dare we say a swarm, of phone-toting fans keen to get selfies with the grinning Raymond. As many of horde are young girls and women scantily dressed to allow for the day’s heat, his grin becomes even wider. My wife grabs her phone and disappears into the crush as fast as anyone else and eventually emerges triumphant with her own personal memento of what has been a very memorable occasion. Continue reading

Meeting Marco Pierre White. The shark at sea

First of the rockstar chefs, rejecter of Michelin Stars and grabber of headlines, Marco Pierre White is one of P&O Cruises Food Heroes. Nick Harman catches up with him mid-voyage

IMG_2347‘’I signed around 1500 of these yesterday,’ says Marco Pierre White indicating a pile of menus in front of him, ‘there’s about another 1000 still to go.’

‘You should get a rubber stamp made up.’ I suggest tentatively, ‘that would make it a lot easier wouldn’t it?’ He turns the Marco stare on me and there’s a beat of silence. ‘But it won’t be the same will it?’ he points out, ‘the people getting it won’t know it’s fake, but I will.’

boatNo longer a Michelin 3 star chef, he eventually threw them back saying that he was sick of trying to impress people who knew less about cooking than he did, Marco is still a man who doesn’t cut corners and doesn’t let customers down. Continue reading