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RAYMOND BLANC

LE MANOIR MAY HOLD TWO MICHELIN STARS, BUT IT HAS LAID THE GROUNDWORK FOR SO MANY MORE. THOSE CHEFS THAT HAVE FLOWN THE NEST AND VENTURED INTO KITCHENS OF THEIR OWN HAVE AN UNDENIABLE ADVANTAGE OVER THE COMPETITION.

The national pride the French have for their cuisine is understandable; we Brits have been thinning our sauces and cooking our meat rarer and rarer over the last thirty years in attempt to narrow the channel-sized gap in our palates. And although our UK chefs are now rivalling the competition ‘sur le continent’, we undoubtedly owe a huge national debt to one man in particular, the culinary catalyst that is Raymond Blanc. His voyage to our shores over three decades ago left his hopes as deflated and as lacklustre as the culinary offerings of the time. But - unwilling to admit defeat - his unrelenting drive to re-educate en masse has helped improve food in every corner of the British Isles. The not-so-secret secret to his success is education. Like the best of pioneers Raymond

has invested in teaching, ensuring his vision will endure within many aspects of food creation and consumption.

reminds me of an egg which, when contained within a truffle will absorb, after time, the intensity and influence of the truffle itself.

Raymond has zealously welcomed every kind of diner, condemning the characteristic fastidiousness synonymous with fine dining, and encouraged a new and refreshingly simple way to enjoy eating and drinking with friends and family.

These fortunate chefs, having trained in a house of exacting standards, often head their own ways after graduation, expanding upon their knowledge and creating a signature style. Many go on to truly excel.

But where Monsieur Blanc has really broken ground is behind the swinging door. Le Manoir may hold two Michelin stars, but it has laid the groundwork for so many more. Those chefs that have flown the nest and ventured into kitchens of their own have an undeniable advantage over the competition.

As the chef world is such a small one, they are promoted not without reputation and most importantly recommendation, and so Raymond Blanc has remained a coveted influence in so many of his protégés’ careers - and personal lives, too. And having watched and guided from the sidelines for so long, like a proud papa on his porch, Raymond Blanc now welcomes back his extended family from their adventures, home to

To use a foodie analogy, the mentoring process

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