Tag Archives: pop-up

Stage.Jacky pop-up returns to The Peking, Sunday 27 September

Following on the success of the recent Stage.Jacky Tasting Menu event hosted by The Peking Restaurant (Kingsmead Square) last month (read our full review here), superchef Jacky Chan will be returning to the Peking kitchen to do it all over again on Sunday 27 September.

Tickets for this exclusive event cost just £65pp for a 5-course Tasting Menu and there are two sittings to choose from (6pm and 8pm.) However…. as space is limited to a maximum of 10 covers per sitting, this event is expected to sell out fast – last time around, the evening sitting sold out in just two hours; you have been warned! So, if you don’t want to miss out on what The Pig Guide can personally guaranteed is a uniquely fascinating experience, give Peking owner Jun a call on 01225 466377 today.

The Oyster Shell ‘On The Road’ – coming to a village near you!

The Oyster Shell‘s On The Road food truck is back out of hibernation and ready to hit the road again, taking their award-winning fish and chips (and langoustines, and sausages, and bubble and squeak Scotch eggs, and more…) to villages around Bath from Monday 1 September. Form an orderly queue in Freshford Village Hall car park every Monday from 1 September, Bishop Sutton AFF car park every Wednesday from 2 September and Welton Rovers FC carpark in Midsomer Norton from Friday 4 September. The van will be open for business on site at each location between 4.30pm-8.30pm, and you can pre-order and choose your preferred collection slot ahead of time here… or simply rock up and order on the day. Enjoy!

Review: Stage.Jacky at The Peking

We’re all getting out and about again – but things ain’t what they used to be. Right now, crowds and confusion dominate the first three days of the week, but venture out Thursday-Sunday and every day, in most restaurants, is like – well, Sunday. At many restaurant tables, hand sanitiser sits were the cruet once belonged. Impromptu walk-in experiences are almost a thing of the past; as for parties, big groups and celebratory gatherings… forget it, for the foreseeable future at least. But hey, talking of at least: at least we’re working out how to be ‘out there’ again… and many of Bath’s best-loved independent restaurants are fighting the good fight to make the ‘new normal’ – well, normal.

The Peking Restaurant has kept the familiarity flag flying in Bath for over three decades, making it not only the city’s longest-established Chinese restaurant but one of Bath’s longest-established restaurants, period. It’s one of my go-to hotspots when I know what I want, and I know what I want will be very, very good here: aromatic lamb with pancakes, lemon chicken, Kung Po king prawns, crispy beef, monkfish with ginger and spring onions – I don’t really even have to read the menu anymore, but I read it just because I love it, and then I order what I love.

But hey, hang on! A Tasting Menu… at The Peking? A different chef… at The Peking? Only 10 diners… at The Peking? Yes. Because for one night (not quite*) only, Peking proprietor Jun hosted a pop-up hosted putting chef Jacky Chan – a fascinating guy with an illustrious CV (read all about him in our original news story about this event here) – centre stage for the Stage.Jacky event.

It feels a little odd to be in The Peking without the bustle and buzz of the usual peak time vibe around us. But odd, these days, is commonplace, and the restaurant’s fuss-free space lends itself well to both this and every ‘new normal’ occasion. The overall modus operandi, however, is very much business as usual: the staff are always, always lovely here, and Jun mixes and mingles with his customers like the old friend that he’s become to his Peking stalwarts. But tonight, there’s a sense of anticipation in the air that has nothing at all to do with the imminent arrival of prawn crackers with our beer and everything to do with that feeling you get only when you know you’re about to experience something very, very special.

Chef Jacky is softly-spoken man who delivers his plates to our tables with a refreshing minimum of pomp or ceremony, leaving his food to speak volumes for him… and from the very first glance Jacky’s food not only talks, but deserves to be talked about.

An amuse bouche involving roast cherry tomatoes that look like roast cherry tomatoes but reveal themselves, once in the amused bouche itself, to be something very savoury, and very beautiful. Another bite of subtly complex Asian-infused deliciousness on a crispy seaweed nest. Are these precursors a taste of things to come? Oh very much yes… and then some.

Silky, opalescent sous vide scallops served with plums in wine, sauce and fresh sliver form on a bed of slippery potato glass noodles. A plump, sturdy little slipper of very fresh red mullet proving its worth as the ideal partner for a well-balanced smattering of umami delivered by depth-charge dashi and an equally intense fish foam, with spring onion oil sharpening and uplifting proceedings (see pic.) A fat, pink langoustine almost adjacent to a prawn ‘sausage’, intense salted duck egg turning the flavour volume up to 11 while mustard foam, langoustine mayo and cauliflower rice add further interest, complexity and texture at every turn. Two neat, soft slabs of duck breast with a rich, indulgent ingot of duck liver pate, zhenjiang vinegar roasted shallots cutting boldly through the intrinsically gamey flavours and Chinese roast duck sauce bringing an almost-but-not-quite sense of familiarity to what is, ostensibly, a sharply astute makeover of an erstwhile classic combination. And the show isn’t over yet…

There’s a pre-dessert before the dessert ‘proper’: a jelly involving essence of tomato and honey topped with basil cream (forgive me, Chef Jacky, if I’ve got the combination description wrong here, but boy oh boy, this little taster was so right, for me) and deep fried milk – yes, deep fried milk! – with yogurt gelato, beetroot and Japanese pickled ginger. I wouldn’t have ordered either dessert, but now they’re both all I want to eat after a meal, ever.

Presentation throughout is impeccably elegant: colours, shadow, space and the crockery itself are all given due consideration but with scene setting, not scene stealing, at the epicentre of the design. Not a single element on any plate doesn’t deserve centre stage; every dish is fabulous but not flashy, fascinating but not faddy. Yes, there’s an indisputable Asian theme running throughout the menu, but homage is paid equally to both classic and modern French sensibilities too; like, wow. Real, proper wow.

Old meets new, nostalgia meets reinvention, and life goes on. Next week I’ll be back in The Peking, raving about my old faves. At the end of September (date tbc*, but I’ll be very quick off the mark in giving you plenty of notice), I’ll be back in the audience when Stage.Jacky returns to the restaurant for an encore. And right now – for what feels like the first time in a very long time – the future looks bright.

Eveleigh’s at Lansdown Cricket Club, every Friday from 8 November

When super-foodie couple Sammy and Jim welcomed beautiful new baby James into the family fold last November, they decided to give their work/life balance a bit of a refresh and sold the on-street incarnation of Eveleigh’s Cafe. Sammy and Jim didn’t, thank goodness, entirely turn their backs on food world; to the contrary, their fabulous catering business has gone from strength to strength… and now there’s some really exciting news to share.

Every Friday from 8 November, Eveleigh’s at Lansdown Cricket Club will offer a tastefully indulgent menu including Tunley Farm burgers, flatbread pizzas, fully-loaded nachos topped with steak or bean chilli, a variety of super salads and more, all perfect for Friday Feasting, all available to eat in at the club (which welcomes non-members and new members alike) or to take away, and all entirely homemade. Howzat?!

Meanwhile, the lovely Eveleigh’s folk will be rolling out all manner of offers and news over the coming months, and will celebrate the third year of their highly acclaimed Christmas Accompaniments initiative this festive season: a selection of lush homemade accompaniments for Christmas Lunch of Dinner available for collection or local delivery on Christmas Eve.

Now that’s what we call a very good innings indeed.

Christmas Tavern pop up at The Bird

The Bird – Bath’s wholly unique, thoroughly welcoming merrymaking zone on Pulteney Road – has created a magical pop-up Christmas Tavern for the festive season, opening on Thursday 28 November.

Described as “a more grown up take on last year’s Winter Wonderland setting,” the relaxed festive retreat is the perfect place to gather with family, friends and/or colleagues. Tree-lined walkways and snow-capped mountain scenes set the (wintery) scene, while a cosy wood burner with vast fireplace surround laden with decorations and twinkling fairy lights at the heart of the log-cabin style venue complete the cosy-but-chic Christmas vibe.

Festive food menu offerings range from seasonal snacks (think, turkey and cranberry sausage rolls and creamy parsnip soup) to Christmas afternoon teas, sourdough pizzas, and sweet treats such as warm mince pies with Bailey’s cream and churros with spiced cinnamon sugar, while cocktails take their cue from the classics with a Christmassy twist.

Meanwhile, cocktail sharers (served in “Christmas Puddings”, giant martini glasses and disco balls) as well as local beers and ciders, fine wines and plenty of soft drink options keep attention levels up across various bars alongside warming hot chocolate and mulled drinks – all in all, there’s definitely no shortage of Christmas cheer on offer.

As well as special join-a-party nights and the option to hire the venue for a private party, there’s a Faulty Towers dining experience on the calendar for Monday 2 December, a fondue lunch party in the diary for Thursday 12 December, Christmas Day lunch, and a New Year’s Eve Birdhouse party with cocktails, a three-course dinner with wine, DJ and dancing into the early hours to see out the festive season in style – for the full line-up of enticing events, menus and all kinds of everything else, clickety-click right here, right now.

The Christmas Tavern is open to all every day from 28 November to 31 December excluding Christmas Day, Boxing Day and Christmas party dates. Bring your flock – but be warned: booking is strongly advised.

Japanese Zen Cuisine-SHOJIN in Bath FOR ONE NIGHT ONLY, Monday 10 June

Highly regarded among some of the world’s most famous chefs (Alain Ducasse is a huge fan,) Master Tanahashi enjoys cult status in Japan and has hosted his Temple Cuisine pop-up in some of the world’s best known restaurants including the Four Seasons and Carousel, London. His discipline is the Zen Buddhist Temple cuisine of Shojin Royri: an ancient, traditional Japanese cuisine using only plants. Shojin combines deep love and respect for the dishes Master Tanahashi creates, combining mindful preparation with ingredients that nourish the body, mind and soul – for a fascinating insight into Master Tanahashi’s world, click on this link, then…

do NOT miss out on this unique opportunity to experience Master Tanahashi’s exclusive Shojin Royri pop-up at Nourish, Larkhall on Monday 10 June, when he will introduce his very special 6-course, fine-dining, plant-based foodie extravaganza to a limited number of diners in Bath. We can’t tell you what’s on Monday’s menu yet because Tanahashi San himself won’t know until he’s visited the market on the morning of the pop-up and discussed with the vegetables which will be the best to use on the day (yes, really.) What we can guarantee, however, is that this will be an unforgettable experience.

Tickets for this event cost just £49.50pp… but there’s yet more exciting news to share: use exclusive code ELL19 when you click on this link to book, and earn a £5 discount on each ticket. 

Sri Lankan fundraiser pop-up at the Thoughtful Bakery, Saturday 25 May

During the aftermath of the tragic Easter Sunday bombings in Sri Lanka, Laura Lord and Caryl Hicks wanted to do anything they could to raise money for their family and friends back home. And so, on the evening of Saturday 25 May, a very special kitchen is popping up at Bath’s very special bakery (that’ll be the Thoughtful Bakery on Barton Street, then), when Laura and Caryl will create a selection of their family’s favourite, authentic Sri Lankan dishes using recipes that have been passed down their family through four generations, and donate all proceeds raised to grass-roots Sri Lankan charity Kind Hearted Lankans.

The menu flaunts all manner of vibrant, tantalising Sri Lankan fave raves including pancake rolls, egg (and egg-free) hoppers; chicken, prawn, black pork and vegan curries; and sides including sambals and green mallum. Don’t know what green mallum is? Now’s your chance to find out!

The £10 ticket is a non-refundable deposit which will be taken off your bill on the night – to grab yours (which you must, and fast – space is very limited and set to sell-out fast), view the full menu and pre-order for your party, click on this link today.

Valley Fest, Friday 2-Sunday 4 August – tasty news indeed!

Summer’s (almost!) here and the time is (almost!) right to start getting very, very excited about this year’s Valley Fest: “the best-tasting music festival in the South West”, taking place in the utterly gorgeous surroundings of Chew Valley Lake, Somerset across the weekend of Friday 2-Sunday 4 August – and this year, it’s even bigger and even better than ever before, what with Tom Odell, Razorlight and a DJ set from Basement Jaxx headlining a stunning line-up of live music for all. But we are, after all, Piggies – and for us, Valley Fest represents one tasty little (or rather, very big) slice of foodie news for us, too…

VF head honchos have advised us to rock up hungry to make the very most of The Tuck Inn: the onsite festival foodie zone which will host a variety of talks and tastings alongside a scrumptious menu of top tapas served at big, sociable tables at lunchtimes. Tuck Inn tapas chefs include Annie Coplestone (Moro; River Cottage; River Café) and her colleague Carlotta Paolieri, who has a decade of hospitality experience including a stint at London’s Sketch on her CV.

But don’t, whatever you do, overlook the festival’s fabulous Feast events, described by the organisers as “feasts of epic proportions featuring menus of culinary delights and surprise performances held in the Tuck Inn tipis.” Feast bookings will open soon, but here’s a very tasty teaser to further whet your appetite: on Saturday night, Bristol’s one and only Josh Eggleton will be collaborating with Rob Howell (head chef of Bristol’s Root, which recently won a Bib Gourmand) at the hob; if you miss this, you’ll seriously miss out.

Meanwhile (yup, there’s yet more to explore), the Street Food stalls will be up-and-running and at your service throughout the whole glorious shebang, while the onsite Artisan Market – offering a massive array of locally-sourced produce that also fuels the Tuck Inn tapas menus – guarantees that you won’t want to leave empty handed.

Ready to book yet? Why wouldn’t you be! Clickety-click double-quick right here, right now to grab your tickets which will, needless to say, sell out fast. 

The Marlborough Tavern confirmed in Pub in the Park line up

The head honchos at The Marlborough Tavern have some very exciting news to share as the festival season gears up for full-on frenzy: the pub will be one of the key participants at the Pub in the Park festival this year, taking place from 21-23 June in Royal Victoria Park, Bath.

Created by 2-starred Michelin chef Tom Kerridge, Pub in the Park has become the UK’s fastest growing food and music festivals, playing host to the country’s most highly-acclaimed gastropubs and restaurants (for specific info, click on this link) to complement a spectacular live music line up.

We’re thrilled to have been invited to be a part of this year’s Pub in the Park,” says Joe Cussens, Managing Director of the independent Bath Pub Company at the MT helm. “It’s going to be great to rub shoulders with some of the good and great in our industry. Being so close to Royal Victoria Park last year we had loads of people coming into the pub either before or after their session – we almost felt like the unofficial after show venue. This year, it’s nice to go one step further and be part of the official line up. It caps a great year for us at the Marlborough – the food and service has never been better, and it comes on the back of picking up the best gastropub Bath Life Award too!”

Liberty Hatton from the Pub in the Park events team adds: “We’re delighted to have The Marlborough Tavern joining us at Pub in the Park Bath – the pub is a fantastic addition to the line-up, being just a stone’s throw away from the park itself, and now bringing the taste of Bath to the festival! We wanted to get a good local representation involved this year and we chose the Marlborough Tavern after listening to locals’ feedback and advice on the best pubs in the surrounding area – the Marlborough was consistently top of the list. The Pub in the Park team ate there last year after a long day leading up to the event and were blown away by the delicious food – we knew back then that it had to be put on the list for 2019!”

The Marlborough Tavern’s Head Chef Jack Scarterfield and his team are currently planning their festival menu. “It’s fantastic that we’re included in the festival this year and i’m really looking forward to working alongside some of the industry’s finest chefs,” says Jack. “Pub in the Park is a great opportunity to showcase the wonderful local produce which I get to use on the Marlborough menus every day. My food is local, rustic and packed full of flavour… and I can’t wait to get stuck in!”

Neither can we, Jack – neither can we!

Bath Soft Cheese Feast at Wolf Wine, Saturday 23 February

Cheese’n’wine, wine’n’cheese – it’s a match made in heaven, right? But when the cheese is supplied by the Bath Soft Cheese Company and the wine flows courtesy of convivial hosts Wolf Wine, the partnership is elevated to another level altogether. So…

Get yourself along to Wolf Wine HQ (Green Park Station) at 7pm on Saturday 23 February and prepare to indulge your senses courtesy of a tower of expertly-curated cheese accompanied by an optional craft wine flight specifically selected to bring out the very best in this perfect prandial partnership.

Tickets cost £15pp to include a welcome drink and unlimited cheese plus an additional £12 if you’re in the mood to include that very special wine flight (highly recommended.) If you don’t fancy buckling up for the full-on wine flight, you can choose your own tipple from Wolf Wine’s legendarily fascinating selection of craft wines and craft beers, all individually priced.

You really don’t want to miss this, do you? So…. as space is limited and tickets are set to sell out fast, grab yours today either directly from Wolf Wine or by clicking on this link.

Comptoir+Cuisine at Always Sunday House: news review

On Saturday 2 February, we were lucky enough to be invited along to what turned out to be one of the most magical, unique events we’ve ever attended in Bath: a super-stylish collaboration between creative visionary Lexi Learmond’s remarkable Always Sunday initiative (click on this link to find out more – seriously, there’s SO much to discover) and Comptoir+Cuisine, a brand new (to Bath, at least) venture that brings together a Champagne Bar, bistro and shop together under one utterly gorgeous George Street roof.

The event took place at the almost ethereally pretty, beautifully decorated Always Sunday House on Bathwick Hill (see pics on our Twitter feed) and was hosted by C+C’s Stefano and Maud, who talked us and around 18 friendly, fellow guests through four courses of fine cheese and elegant charcuterie (oh, and a splendid pud!) expertly paired with Champagnes to match.

Having sipped Furdyna Carte Blanche Brut NV on arrival, we sat down to indulge our senses in delectably moreish yet complex Colin Blanche de Castille 1er Brut NV Blanc de Blancs served with Le Comté and St Felicien with honey; luscious Lacroix Rosé Brut NV served with cured meats and Le Chaource; Champagne Le Gallais cuvée du Manor Brut NV served with sticky toffee pudding… mon dieu, this was the elegant house party of our dreams, with extra-added cheese. And fizz. And superb hosts. And really, really good live music. We found out just how fabulous fizz with food can be. We made new friends, all of whom swiftly became old friends (it really is that kinda place.) We left wishing it could be Sunday every day… and vowing to return to the Always Sunday House as soon as possible. And you really, really should join us – there’s honestly nothing like it, anywhere else in Bath.

For the full menu of Always Sunday events (including the next Supper Club on Saturday 30 March) click here.

The Bath Priory pops up at Bath College, Thursday 17 January

On Thursday 17 January, The Bath Priory’s Executive Chef Michael Nizzero will be stepping out of his award-winning kitchen to join Bath College’s catering and hospitality students in presenting an evening of culinary delights.

Hosted at the college’s Shrubbery Restaurant, expect to be greeted by a selection of canapés on arrival before savouring an outstanding four-course tasting menu to include delightful dishes including Cornish crab with celery and lovage; sea bass with fennel purée, seaweed, shellfish and Champagne emulsion; beef fillet with a red wine and tarragon sauce… and blackcurrant soufflé served with ivoire chocolate and sorbet, all prepared and served by Michael and the college’s team of talented students. The cost of such a splendid feast? Just £50pp.

To book (and seriously, why wouldn’t you want to do that, right now?) contact The Shrubbery Restaurant by email (shrubberyrestaurant@bathcollege.ac.uk) or call 01225 328502.

Pravdog Supper Club at Castle Farm Cafe, Wed 30 May

***EVENT POSTPONED***

Watch this space for further updates and rescheduled date.

Summer’s here, and the time is right for… making the very most of the Castle Farm Cafe, Bath’s very own super-pretty destination diner, set to come into its own now the sun has started playing out… and there’s a very special Supper Club event in the immediate pipeline.

Pravdog chef Pravin Nayar will be taking to the Midford hills and setting up his kitchen at Castle Farm on Wednesday 30 May in readiness to host an evening of foodie-fabulosity served in a convivial setting, presenting dishes designed to celebrate the new season over 7 courses and including stone baked potato flatbread, Nigella butter and charred aubergine; grilled Wye Valley asparagus, peas, broad beans, lemon, and mint; cinnamon buns ‘stone baked in the oven’ accompanied by sweet pickled strawberries and Ivy Farm cream – seriously, what’s not to love?

The menu is vegetarian (as is the Castle Farm kitchen itself,) the fun starts at 7pm (food served at 7.30,) a fully licensed bar will be fully open for business and tickets cost just £35pp, to include all food. But here’s the rub, Piggies: advance booking is essential – email info@castlefarmcafe.co.uk today to guarantee your place at the table.

We’re very happy right now because…

We’re working our way through the recipes in Acorn Vegetarian Kitchen chef/proprietor Richard Buckley’s gorgeous new meat-free cookery book Plants Taste Better – seriously Piggies, this is one fabulous recipe collection! Our greatest hits so far include the Rosemary Polenta Chips, the Butternut Mousse and the utterly splendid Hazelnut Roast. Next stop: Walnut Tortellini followed by Richard’s signature Chocolate Salted Caramel Tart. Want to get your hands on a signed copy? Click here. Want to read our latest review of Richard’s restaurant? It’s in the pipeline, Piggies!

We’re raising several glasses to (and at the bar in) the Packhorse Inn in Southstoke. After many years of campaigning and months of project toil, this glorious, characterful historic pub reopened its doors last month (on the 400th anniversary, as it happens, of its inauguration as an ale house,) marking the completion of a long, hard fight backed by over 400 visionary community shareholders involved in the largest ever “pub buy-back” in the UK. Cheers!

We’re steak-ing out Bailbrook House every Thursday from now until the end of August and pigging out on two Somerset rump steaks accompanied by proper fat chips, beer-battered onion rings, grilled plum tomato and field mushrooms, peppercorn sauce, watercress and a bottle of wine to share for just £35 (reservations essential; call 01225 855100 to book your table.)

We’re eagerly anticipating getting up-close-and-personal with Ash Saman, the uniquely cool chef who boasts stints at Chequers, Casamia, Clivedon House Hotel and the Glassboat on his extensive CV. Ash is hosting his first ever Bath-based pop-up at the Circus Restaurant on Sunday 6 May – are we excited at the prospect? Heck, yeah! (6 courses/£50pp; optional wine flight £25pp – @ChefAshSaman)

We’re going to see the one and only Mary Berry do her one and only Mary Berry ‘thing’ at the Forum on Thursday 26 April, courtesy of those lovely folk at Toppings Books. Don’t be a soggy bottom – join us!

Review: Dinewithi, Bristol

Many years ago – and for many happy years – I worked for the legendary Venue magazine (now sadly RIP) and contributed lots and lots of words to its famous/infamous food pages. It was during this time that I first became aware of chef Tim Owen, who has stints at both the Star and Dove and The Oxford under his belt, but has been working independently running his Dinewithi pop-up ventures for quite a while now. Anyway, Tim recently got in touch with me and said hello again. And I was delighted to hear from him. And I was even more delighted to be invited to his most recent Supper Club, which he hosted at the lovely Totterdown Canteen last Saturday. And I’m absolutely delighted – not to mention lucky – that I took him up on his invitation, because it turned out to be an experience that I won’t forget for a very long time to come.

Tim is one of those characterful, opinionated, tenacious chefs that, in these “keep corporate/toe the (maximum profit) line” days, are fast becoming a lesser-spotted breed; confident but not conceited, headstrong without being belligerent about it. And he’s clearly a very popular man – on the evening we visited, his £30pp BYO event was packed to capacity; party atmosphere? Bring. It. On!

Having taken to our table, opened the first of the many bottles of wine we’d transported with us from Bath and started to soak up the gently buzzing vibe that thrummed all around us, the first treat (of many to come) hit the table in the form of mini pissaladière – tantalisingly moreish little bites that brought sweet caramelised onions and salty anchovies together in perfect harmony on crisp toast, and offered a taste of southern France to Totterdown. I could have eaten three of these, or six, or more… but then again, I’m glad I didn’t because we were skipping back across the channel for a hearty Cullen Skink: a creamy, dreamy combination of smoked fish and tender chunks of potatoes in a silky, quietly complex stock/broth served with sourdough bread courtesy of Baked of Totterdown, which arrived slathered in a vibrant, lemon-infused garlic butter that added a zingy blast of citrus to the depth charge of flavours in the bowl. Talking of depth charge of flavours…

Next up on our Dinewithi discovery: 24-hour Somerset lamb shoulder as succulent and tender as lamb can possibly get, flaunting those intrinsically sweet, slightly fruity characteristics that are only pushed to the fore when the meat is sourced this well, and cooked this properly. To accompany our meaty feast, a generous pillow of crushed white bean, parmesan and savoy cabbage mash that bought yet more luxurious texture and grounding earth notes to an already boldly authoritative dish, while a splash of piquant Chimichurri (which I always think of as the bolder foodie’s version of sauce vierge) turned the whole combination into a loud, proud celebration of all that is good about really, really good food.

Halfway through this dish, it occurred to me that Tim had, in the nicest possible way, shaken me out of the kind of soporific, “I’m used to eating out” slump that food writers can so easily slip into. He’d confidently lured me out of complacency and taken me on an exciting excursion back to a place that reminded me why and how chefs can be this exciting. On one level, Tim’s food is about as down-to-earth and accessible as real eating gets. But when a properly passionate, properly brave, properly talented chef takes those down-to-earth, accessible ingredients and turns them into magic on several plates, a very special kind of alchemy happens. And the enchantment didn’t end there.

For dessert, there was caramelised zest lemon posset served with chocolate orange florentine – think of traditional lemon posset served with a shortbread biscuit, then throw that thought out of your mind altogether and think again; this was a properly indulgent pudding, satisfyingly creamy but not over-excessively so (as is often the case, with posset,) while the addition of that nutty, orange-infused, distinctively textured nibble was pure genius.

And actually, in summary, that’s how I’d describe Tim: pure genius in the form of an inspired chef with a uniquely charismatic personality. Tim: your good old days haven’t happened yet; keep doing what you’re doing, and the best is yet to come.

Keep up with Tim/Dinewithi on Twitter ‪@dinewithi‬