Top London Chefs Enjoyed Cocktail Innovation and Culinary Capers on board The Yacht London
Halloween, 2016 will certainly be remembered as one of the warmest, most glorious, Autumnal days in living memory! It will also be remembered by top London chefs as a fantastic day of knowledge sharing, menu inspiration and a show of support for the next generation of hospitality professionals on board The Yacht London, the perfect venue for The Chefs’ Forum’s quarter four meet in the capital.
As the weather was so brilliant, events manager Ross Keown took the executive decision to remove the canvas sides of the upper deck, creating an open-air setting for The Chefs’ Forum on the beautifully-restored 1920s luxury steam yacht. The Yacht London is permanently moored between Embankment and Temple on the north bank of the river Thames, in what is known as “The Mayfair of the River”.
The Chefs’ Forum Founder Catherine Farinha, John Hyde CBE FIH (HIT Training) and Sadie Highham (University of West London) welcomed the culinary experts on board the Yacht for a day of cooking, cocktails and collaboration.
The Yacht Head Chef Craig Ian McAlpine (probably the most Dapper chef in the UK) worked with students from the University of West London and Hit Training to produce some excellent canapés showcasing seasonal delicacies Fenland Celery and Parsley Root. Ian then performed a duo of cookery demonstrations to emphasise the delicious taste and versatility of the Autumnal produce. Ian was very impressed with the learners from both training providers and congratulated them on their enthusiasm and professionalism
“It is great to host The Chefs’ Forum today. I have really enjoyed working with the young people from the University of West London and Hit Training. They turned up early, got stuck in and produced some excellent food today. I have also been really impressed with the students working front of house today and they should be very proud of themselves – A great sign for the future of industry”.
Paul Da Costa Greaves then took the floor to give the guests a Koppert Cress ‘Cresperience’ with the help of expertly selected taster cups of cress and a highly ‘memorable’ Szechuan button ‘mouth-watering experience’ thrown in for good measure. Extraordinarily talented, witty and inventive, Masterchef of Great Britain, Da Costa Greaves could be described as a culinary alchemist in his innovation of explosive flavour combinations made from his delicious Dutch cress, edible flowers and micro herbs.
Stephanie Hennion from the Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) then led chefs in a wine tasting to establish the sensitivity of their palate and the effect different foods have on the flavour of wine. Koppert Cress acted as a fantastic palate-cleanser.
The day ended with a presentation and tasting by Fenland Celery and Chase Distillery on the relationship between vegetables and the production of alcohol, specifically vodka, gin and elderflower liquor. Growers are increasing looking for ways in which to maximise on their crop and are adding spirits and liquors their product range.
The students then tried their hand at creating cocktails with the Chase range of products, impressing industry experts to win a visit and tour of the Chase Distillery in Hereford.
The Chefs’ Forum effectively links education with industry and quality suppliers to top chefs, the next London event will take place at the University of West London on the 6th February where students will cook a four course lunch for local employers led by top chefs and industry experts.
Photography by www.pavlovaandcream.com