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LOOKS LIKE GOOD FOOD. FEELS LIKE A GOOD CAUSE.
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EXCITING NEW LOOK, SAME GREAT TASTE
IN 1874 A BARMAN BY THE NAME OF M.W. HERON CAPTURED THE SPIRIT OF NEW ORLEANS THROUGH A BLEND OF WHISKY, FRUIT AND SPICES AND NAMED IT SOUTHERN COMFORT. WE MAY HAVE GIVEN THE BOTTLE AND LABEL A BIT OF A NIP N’TUCK, BUT 143 YEARS LATER LITTLE’S CHANGED. IT’S THE SAME GREAT SMOOTH TASTE THAT WELCOMES YOU TO AMERICA’S DEEP SOUTH AND ONE OF THE MOST VIBRANT CITIES OF THE WORLD.
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Jon Hawkins DEPUTY EDITOR
Lydia Winter SUB EDITOR
Victoria Smith CONTRIBUTORS
Amanda Brame, Alexandra Dudley, Clare Finney, Tom Hunt, Tom Powell, Victoria Stewart, Richard H Turner
Design ART DIRECTOR
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Melissa van der Haak LEAD DEVELOPER
Steve Cole FINANCE
Caroline Walker Taylor Haynes DIRECTOR
James Rolph MANAGING DIRECTOR
Stephen Laffey CEO
Tim Slee CHAIRMAN
Tom Kelly OBE
foodism uses paper from sustainable sources
Here’s a heavyweight question for you: what’s your favourite fruit? Mine, since you asked, is banana, which is really unfortunate because I don’t live in Ecuador or Colombia or the Dominican Republic, or anywhere else where bananas are actually grown. I live in South East London, and that means the bananas I eat have been grown on the other side of the world – often in developing countries – and shipped over in controlledtemperature containers. And, as you’ll know if you like bananas as much as I do, they’re ridiculously, eyebrowraisingly cheap to buy in UK shops, all year ’round, even when they’re classified as Organic and Fairtrade. I’m not telling you to stop buying bananas – I’m not going to stop buying the odd banana – but the fact that one of the UK’s consistently biggest-selling fruits can’t be grown on any kind of useful scale in this country says a lot about our mentality when it comes to eating sustainably. And this is one of the biggest challenges faced by the sustainable food movement – campaigners, producers, chefs, restaurateurs, bartenders, research scientists, writers and more can only do so much. As Richard H Turner says in his column on page 32 – we consumers need to vote with our feet, mouths, wallets and shopping bags. In our second annual sustainability special (you’re reading it, btw) you’ll find loads of great ways to do just that, and in doing so help create – even just a little – a food system that makes more sense for the planet and the people living on it. f
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FRONT COVER: Photography by Ian Dingle
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112 THE DIGEST 116 UK TRAVEL 118 THE SELECTOR 130 DECONSTRUCT
Lee Kum Kee Europe
— PART 1 —
GRAZE “THERE’S NEVER BEEN A MORE IMPORTANT TIME TO THINK ABOUT HOW OUR FOOD IS PRODUCED AND WHERE IT’S COMING FROM” GILL MELLER OF RIVER COTTAGE ON THE IMPORTANCE OF SUSTAINABLE COOKING AND EATING, 034
012 THE FOODIST | 014 LONDON LARDER | 018 WEAPONS OF CHOICE | 025 RECIPES 032 COLUMNS | 039 HEAVY MACHINERY | 040 THE RADAR | 045 FOODISM 100
Be sure you’re buying ethical products by following the Fairtrade logo. Here are three of our favourites
1. FAIR G IN
The Goatober initiative shows how big an impact the restaurant community can have, writes Mike Gibson
ERE’S AN UNPALATABLE truth: unless you’re vegan, you have to confront the reality that many, many animals will die to allow for your diet. And when you see the happy, healthy young billy goats in the photograph above, it’s testing to think of them being killed at all, let alone euthanised at birth. That’s a stark way of putting it, but even with the growth of sustainable eating, nonindustrialised farming and higher welfare standards, there are still dark sides to eating meat, and the historical treatment of male kid goats in the dairy industry is one of them. They’re considered a waste product, of no use, and killed shortly after they’re born. But, characteristically for an industry full of inventive, ethically minded people, a solution has been found through the restaurant trade. In 2012, a chef called James Whetlor stepped in, creating Cabrito to offer a neat alternative to euthanising the billies. On the one hand, he encouraged farmers to rear the male goats that were historically disposed of, and on the other provided a market for their meat in restaurants and butchers around the country. It’s a two-
part solution: the wastage is prevented, and up springs a new source of high-welfare, delicious meat for the trade. Despite Cabrito’s success, it’s nothing unless it addresses the problem on a national and even global scale. That’s why the brand is front-and-centre of the UK iteration of Goatober, a month-long celebration of goat meat that was started in New York in 2010 and has since spread to London, Bristol, Manchester and Somerset. The initiative ties together the message, the suppliers and the restaurants, with more than 40 top venues in London and beyond putting signature goat dishes on their menu to spread the word. On 27 September, you can take part in the launch event at The Montcalm hotel, where chefs including Gill Meller, The Jugged Hare’s Stephen Englefield and Temper’s George Wood will be creating a collaborative menu, with proceeds going to Action Against Hunger. With any luck, the collective talent involved will see Goatober’s impact felt further afield than just restaurant dining rooms. f cabrito.co.uk/goatober
If you like your gin cocktails with an extra dash of social conscience, then this barrel-aged gin from French micro-distillery FAIR may just be the, er, tonic. Its juniper berries, coriander and cardamom are all sourced from a Fairtrade nature reserve in the Samarkand region of Uzbekistan, while the other botanicals are from within 30km of the distillery, in France’s Cognac region. £26; masterofmalt.com
2. G USTO OR GANIC C OL A Cola: famous for excess sugar, godawful chemicals and ad campaigns around Christmas time, right? Wrong. UK-based producer Gusto Organic has gone back to its roots and crafted a palate-pleasing proposition based around the ingredient behind the original soft drink – the African kola nut. And what’s more, it’s the first certified organic producer to do so in the UK. Great job, guys. £1.89; drinkgusto.com
3. SUKI TEA EARL GREY Hand-blended at the Suki Tea HQ in Belfast, this all-organic loose leaf is a delicate mixture of black tea from East Africa, natural bergamot oil from Italy and blue cornflowers. The result? A tea that delivers all the bold, fragrant, citrussy notes you’d expect from a quality Earl Grey, but with the added bonus of knowing that the people who farmed it got a fair price so you could sip. £4.90; suki-tea.com
Lee Kum Kee Europe
FOLLOW US @FOODISMUK
TH AT’S WHAT THEY SAID Snippets from our writers and personalities across the industry, all on foodism.co.uk
THE LONDON LARDER
This month: Land Chocolate
SHE HAD AN INCREDIBLE PALATE – EVERYTHING MATTERED. SHE TAUGHT ME ABOUT SIMPLICITY, AND THAT LESS IS MORE
ALLEGRA MCEVEDY, chef-patron of Albertine, on River Café’s Rose Grey
WE CAN SAFELY SAY THE FESTIVAL IS GOING TO BE BETTER THAN EVER. LAST YEAR’S INVOLVED ALMOST 300 RESTAURANTS AND 100 EVENTS. THAT’S A LOT OF FOOD LYDIA WINTER, foodism’s contributing editor, on London Restaurant Festival
Billy Tannery is based on the fact that there’s this fantastic raw material going to waste, and we have the opportunity to make something beautiful from it RORY HARKER, co-founder of luxury leather goods brand Billy Tannery
Big-hitting pudding, künefe – which is made from salty cheese covered in shards of pastry, a pistachio crumb and drowned in sweet syrup – so clearly finished us off that it may as well have taken us outside and put us in a taxi itself
MIKE GIBSON, foodism’s deputy editor, on the signature dessert at Yosma
JORDAN KELLY-LINDEN, foodism’s editorial assistant, on new Hackney restaurant Lahpet
Academy of Chocolate award-winning bean-to-bar single-origin and singlebean chocolate bars. LAND’s range is made from scratch in an old furniture maker’s workshop in Bethnal Green. As small-scale, hand-crafted and, admittedly, as hipster as it gets.
Who makes it? Ex-BBC radio producer and selfconfessed sugar addict Phil Landers, who studied under chocolatier Paul A Young, and later Mast Brothers during their brief stint in Shoreditch.
What does it taste like? There’s a total of six flavours in the Land collection and we, troopers that we are, took down four of them: the Honduras Dark (70% dark), Nicaragua Dark (71% dark), Venezuelan Milk (55% milk) and the Malt Dark (65% dark). Our favourite was the single-origin Nicaragua Dark: it was supremely savoury (especially for a chocolate made by someone with Landers’ sweet tooth), with notes of black olive, smoked tea and eucalyptus. In case those tasting notes didn’t give it away, it’s a serious bar of chocolate, designed for a chocolate connoisseur who doesn’t do things by halves.
Where can I get it? Buy online from £5.50 per (60g) bar at landchocolate.com, or if you prefer to shop in person, find the range in selected shops around East London. f
Photograph by Peter Landers Photography
AROUND THE BACK OF A NARROW STREET IN HACKNEY, IN A RECLAIMED WAREHOUSE BUILT INTO THE SIDE OF LONDON FIELDS STATION, BURMESE RESTAURANT LAHPET IS A PRIME EXAMPLE OF HOW FOOD ENTERPRISES CAN TRANSFORM LONDON’S DISUSED SPACES. EVEN ON A TUESDAY NIGHT, LOCALS ARE QUEUING OUT THE DOOR
What’s the product?
Lee Kum Kee Europe
LOCAL HEROES S U STAI N ABLE FE ASTS
One of London’s best-loved social enterprises is back.This year’s Conflict Café, at House of Vans in Waterloo, features Damascusinspired food by Ayam Zaman, with proceeds going to International Alert to support the peace effort in Syria. grubclub.com/conflict-cafe
EAT GRUB AT FARANG
If the idea of eating insects puts you off, you’d better get used to it, as a more sustainable animal product you won’t find. Don’t believe us? Head to Highbury’s Thai-inspired restaurant Farang in September, where chef Seb Holmes will be cooking up a five-course menu of Thai-style insect dishes in association with Eat Grub. eatgrub.co.uk
SEVERN SISTERS FEAST
Borough Market is throwing open its doors to 11 female chefs next month. The Severn Sisters – who count Zoe Adjonyoh, Rosie Birkett and Olia Hercules among their ranks, to name a few – will be feeding 150 people on the night, with proceeds going to Action Against Hunger. boroughmarket.org.uk
Deepak Ravindran, co-founder of Oddbox, on starting a business that loves all veg
enterprise that fights food waste by locally sourcing misshapen and surplus fruit and vegetables, and delivering weekly wonky veg boxes to homes in south London (with plans to expand to other areas) and wonky fruit boxes to offices in central London. We donate up to 10% of our produce to food charities and local community projects which tackle food poverty, such City Harvest, and the People’s Fridge in Brixton. In our first quarter of operations, we worked with a single supplier, had ten customers, used to pack our boxes at a local church and deliver them to customers ourselves. We now work with 22 suppliers, operate from a warehouse, and have grown 400% in the last seven months to serve 350
homes and offices. We see a bright future in ‘imperfect’ produce because we believe that, just like people, fruit and vegetables come in all shapes, sizes and colours. f Order a wonky office fruit box from £14.99 or a wonky home fruit and veg box (south London only) from £8.49; oddbox.co.uk
Photograph by ###
N 2015, I decided to quit my investment banking career, having worked in financial services for 13 years. I wanted to start something that solved a real problem affecting people’s daily lives. On a holiday to Portugal, my wife and I came across an imperfect-looking tomato that tasted divine. We were puzzled as to why fresh produce in the UK’s supermarkets looked so perfect but didn’t taste as good. I researched and found that in the UK, 30% of fresh produce is wasted as a result of strict supermarket specifications, or because it’s deemed surplus to requirements. The estimated annual food waste is around ten million tonnes and worth £17bn. So I co-founded Oddbox, a social
WEAPONS OF CHOICE Go green with these solutions for meat offcuts, food storage, leftovers and a pan for life PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
G R IND U P M E R C HANT SMEG STAND MIXER, £349 + MULTI FOOD GRINDER, £69 This handy set of attachments turns Smeg’s hero stand mixer into a mincer, which will sink its teeth into whatever you throw at it. Perfect for leftover cuts of meat. smeguk.com
Photograph by ###
JAR O F HO PE BRABANTIA STORAGE JARS, ÂŁ11.95 As well as helping you measure and store food, proceeds from these jars go to The Hunger Project, a social enterprise that trains food producers in the developing world. brabantia.com
AIRT IG HT L OG IC FOODSAVER VERTICAL VACUUM SEALER, Â£89.99 Keep your food fresher for longer with this smart sealer, which comes with a container as well as zip-lock bags. lakeland.co.uk
PAN HANDL ING ANOLON ADVANCED+ UMBER 18CM SAUCEPAN, Â£70 Spend a little more and have a saucepan for life. This Anolon pan is hard anodised, and comes with a lifetime guarantee. lakeland.co.uk
PĂĽl is a traditional Norwegian
fisherman. But he wonâ€™t mind if you cook something more modern.
How about haddock fillets and salsa verde served on a parsley mash? Quick, simple and perfect for something different in the middle of the week. For the full recipe, visit seafoodfromnorway.co.uk @norwayseafood
THE WHOLE PICTURE
GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR FOOD WITH THIS COLLECTION OF BEAUTIFUL, SUSTAINABLE RECIPES BY SUPERSEEDS FOUNDER ALEXANDRA DUDLEY
PHOTOGRAPHS BY ANDREW BURTON
OSE-TO-TAIL, ROOT-TO-FRUIT, ZERO waste: the list of sustainability watchwords is a long one. But that doesn’t mean cooking with the environment in mind isn’t fun and creative. A quick peruse of Land & Sea, the new cookbook from Superseeds founder Alexandra Dudley, demonstrates just what you can acheive. Dudley celebrates real food made with wholesome produce, showing you how to make use of the whole ingredient, from reinventing leftovers to using up veg that’s past its best and cooking with parts that
are otherwise overlooked. Each of her dishes is slick and stylish – and utterly delicious. We’ve chosen four recipes to whet your appetite. There’s a simple poor man’s pesto that’s a little lighter on the wallet; a salad made with sad-looking veg you probably have lurking at the bag of your fridge; a juicy, crispy-coated roast chicken made with Persian-style spices and peanut butter; and indulgent flourless chocolate torte. They’re proof, in case you needed it, that cooking at home can be simple, satisfying and, of course, sustainable. f
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F O O DISM RE CIPE S, IN ASSOC IAT ION W IT H SE AF OOD F R OM NORWAY
Photograph by ###
foodism’s recipe section is brought to you in partnership with Seafood from Norway, the brand of the Norwegian Seafood Council. When it comes to quality, sustainable seafood, Norway’s hard to beat. The country has incredible natural resources, from wild Arctic seas to placid fjords. And, because the Norwegian people have been fishing
for millennia, taking care of this precious resource is in their nature. Chances are, the cod in your local chippy comes from them, as may the salmon in your supermarket. Look for the Seafood from Norway mark of origin – or just the word Norwegian – and use it as a mark of quality and sustainability. For more info: seafoodfromnorway.co.uk
POOR MAN’S PESTO The versatile classic is given a wallet-friendly makeover by substituting pine nuts for equally delicious sunflower seeds
Preparation ◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 0 mins
◆◆ 1 large jar
ING R E DIE NTS Makes 1 large jar of pesto ◆◆ 3 large handfuls of herbs –
a large Dudley uses but you s, rb mix of he your can just pick es it ur vo fa
basil, coriander or parsley, roughly chopped with the stems chopped a little finer ◆◆ 4 tbsp tarragon leaves, chopped (optional) ◆◆ 100g sunflower seeds, toasted ◆◆ 1-2 garlic cloves, crushed (depending on how much garlic you like) ◆◆ about 150ml or more coldpressed extra-virgin olive oil ◆◆ juice of 1 lemon (or more) ◆◆ sea salt
ESTO IS A store-cupboard essential, but if you’re making it from scratch, pine nuts can be incredibly expensive. Dudley set about experimenting with less costly options, like sunflower seeds. She uses basil, parsley, coriander and tarragon, but you can play around with any of your favourite herbs. Stir into pasta, spread on toast or spoon over potatoes, chicken or fish.
1 Combine the herbs, sunflower seeds and garlic in a food processor and pulse until broken down to your preference. 2 Slowly add the oil and lemon juice with the motor still running until you reach the consistency you desire. Season to taste. Transfer to sterilised jars or an airtight container. This will keep for about a week in the fridge. f
SAD VEGGIE SALAD
Rescue any wilted veg you have languishing at the back of your fridge with this simple recipe that’ll turn them into a bright, flavour-packed roasted salad
◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 30 mins
T HAPPENS TO the best of us: we’ll find a bunch of slightly floppy carrots that have been forgotten after a weekend of spontaneity, or a lettuce that got lost at the back of the fridge. Instead of throwing these sad vegetables away, Dudley uses them in a roasted salad. Cooking them this way brings the veggies back to life, and means you can use whatever you have lying around, to delicious effect. “Despite being a watery vegetable, romaine lettuce is one of my favourite things to include,” she says. “Spring onions make an especially nice addition, too. You can swap as you please and increase the amounts as necessary, depending on how much
unhappy produce you have around.”
1 Preheat the oven to 200°C. 2 Wash all the vegetables and peel any tough skin (keeping this for stock). You will probably find that the floppier the vegetable the tougher it is to peel. Don’t worry, just peel as best you can. If you are using spring onions, peel off the outer tougher skin and trim off the hairy ends. 3 Trim the top part of the romaine and cut it into quarters. Roughly chop the vegetables into evenly sized pieces and arrange all the vegetables in a large roasting tin lightly greased with whichever oil you are using.
4 Peel your ginger. Top tip: use a teaspoon instead of a knife. It’s the quickest and least-fiddly way to do it and the skin peels off incredibly easily without taking the flesh with it. 5 In a small bowl, combine the oil or butter with the honey, mixed spice, cumin and grated ginger, stirring thoroughly to bring it all together. 6 Pour this over the vegetables and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, tossing halfway through. The roots should be cooked through and have started to char nicely. 7 Transfer your jewelled salad to a large serving plate and sprinkle over your herb of choice, along with a handful of toasted seeds or nuts. f
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ About 4 sad carrots, or any
root vegetable in your fridge
◆◆ 1 head of romaine ◆◆ 2 red onions
◆◆ 1 fennel bulb
◆◆ 1 bunch of spring onions
◆◆ 3 tbsp olive oil, coconut oil or
butter, plus extra for greasing
◆◆ 2 tbsp honey
◆◆ ½ tsp mixed spice Photographs by Andrew Burton
◆◆ ½ tsp ground cumin
red onions Carrots and lourful, co r make fo ons tasty additi
◆◆ Thumb-sized piece of ginger,
peeled and grated ◆◆ Small bunch of roughly
chopped herbs (we like coriander) ◆◆ A small handful of nuts or seeds, toasted
Norwegian salmon taste special.
PERSIAN PEANUT CHICKEN
Persian spices and peanut butter give your next Sunday roast an easy – and incredibly tasty – twist
◆◆ 2-4 hrs
GET THE BOOK
◆◆ 40-50 mins
UDLEY DEVELOPED THIS recipe one warm April Sunday, when roast potatoes and gravy seemed all too wintery. She swapped buttered cabbage for a cool cucumber salad, topped with fresh mint. “This chicken is rich with flavour and the addition of peanut butter also keeps the meat wonderfully tender,” she says. The recipe calls for a spatchcocked chicken, which most butchers will do for you, but you can easily do it yourself if needed.
1 Combine the turmeric, mixed spice, sumac, peanut butter, oil and vinegar in a small bowl. Season well, then place the chicken in a large bowl and rub about three-quarters of the mix all over the bird. Work the remaining marinade over the breast of the chicken by pushing it under the skin. Cover, put in the fridge and leave the chicken to marinate for 2-4 hours while you prepare the slaw. 2 Place the onion in a small bowl and add the red wine vinegar and the juice
Land & Sea: Secrets to simple, sustainable, sensational food by Alexandra Dudley; photography by Andrew Burton. Published by Orion
of peanut The addition the meat s butter keep juicy ly ul rf de won
from three of the limes. Cover with cling film and leave to steep in the fridge for at least 2 hours. You’ll notice the onions turn a bright pink as they start to slightly pickle. 3 Take 2 tablespoons of the steeping juice from your onions and place it in a serving bowl along with the olive oil and the juice from the remaining lime. Mix and season to taste. You may want to add the rest of your lime juice. Drain and rinse the onions before adding them to the bowl. 4 Slice the cucumber in half lengthways and scoop out the seedy centre using a teaspoon. Cut the cucumber halves on the diagonal into thin slices and add these to the onions. Toss everything together and
Because that’s how we treat them.
keep cool until ready to serve. 5 Preheat the barbecue until the coals are white hot, or if you are using an oven, preheat it to 200°C. The cooking time for the chicken varies, but a rough guide is 40-50 minutes in the oven or 35-40 on the barbecue. Check the chicken is cooked through. 6 When you are just about ready to serve, throw the chopped mint leaves and pomegranate seeds into your slaw and give everything a toss. Transfer the chicken to a serving dish and roughly divide it into legs, breasts and wings, letting everyone pick and choose their favourite cut. Any leftover juices in the serving dish will be delicious, so serve slices of a good crusty bread for mopping them up. f
Pure glacial meltwater collides with Arctic seawater in our famous fjords, creating ideal conditions for salmon to grow. In addition to the pristine water, we treat them like superstars, with lots of space and five-star food. This results in vibrant flesh of such quality, you can eat it raw. Look for delicious, sustainable Norwegian salmon in your supermarket.
ING R E DIE NTS ◆◆ 1 chicken (about 1.3kg),
◆◆ 1 tsp turmeric
◆◆ 2 tsp mixed spice ◆◆ 1 tsp sumac
◆◆ 1 heaped tbsp peanut butter ◆◆ 2 tbsp olive oil
◆◆ 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar ◆◆ Sea salt and black pepper ◆◆ Crusty loaf, to serve
For the slaw ◆◆ 1 red onion, finely sliced ◆◆ 5 tbsp red wine vinegar ◆◆ 4 limes Photograph by ###
◆◆ 3 tbsp cold-pressed olive oil ◆◆ 1 cucumber
◆◆ Seeds of 1 pomegranate ◆◆ Bunch of mint, chopped
Dense and just the right side of gooey, this intensely chocolatey flourless cake is pure indulgence. Do we want seconds? Just a bit… I N GREDI EN TS ◆◆ 225g butter, plus extra for
◆◆ 60g light brown soft sugar
or coconut sugar, plus a little extra for sprinkling ◆◆ 250g good-quality dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids) ◆◆ 5 eggs, at room temperature ◆◆ 2 tsp vanilla extract ◆◆ 1 heaped tsp good quality sea salt, plus more for sprinkling (or 1 tsp instant espresso powder) ◆◆ 2 tbsp cacao or cocoa powder, for sprinkling (optional) ◆◆ Good cream, yoghurt or coconut yoghurt and a few sharp berries, to serve
◆◆ 10 mins
◆◆ 45 mins
1 Preheat the oven to 160°C, lightly grease the base of a 22cm springform cake tin and line with
baking parchment. Lightly grease the parchment, too, and sprinkle over a little sugar, shake the tin to evenly disperse and tip away the excess. 2 Double-wrap the base and sides of the outside of the tin with tin foil – you will be baking the torte in a bain marie, so you want to ensure no water gets into the cake during cooking. 3 Take a deep roasting tray in which your wrapped cake tin fits nicely. 4 Melt the chocolate and butter in a pan over a low heat, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat when most of the chocolate has melted and there are just a few small pieces left. These will continue to melt
as the chocolate cools. 5 In a separate, medium-sized bowl, whisk the eggs and sugar using an electric whisk for about 2 minutes. Add the vanilla, sea salt and cacao/ cocoa and whisk again to combine. Gradually pour in the melted chocolate, changing the whisk speed to the slowest setting. 6 Pour the mix into the tin and give the base a few flicks with your index finger to remove any air bubbles. Placing the tin on a flat surface and giving it a gentle wobble can also help. 7 Fill a kettle with water and boil. Place the tin into the roasting tray and slide the tray onto the middle rack of the oven. Pull out the rack as much as you can without putting the cake into slipping danger and slowly pour in the boiling water from the kettle until it comes to about 2cm up the side of the tin. Bake for 45-50 minutes or until the cake has set but the centre is still soft. 8 Carefully remove from the oven, making sure you don’t splash any water into the cake, then slowly draw the tin out of the water and place on a flat surface lined with a tea towel. Peel the foil away from the tin, again taking care as there may be a few leaks which will be very hot, then place the cake in the tin on a wire rack to cool. 9 To serve, release the sides of the tin and invert onto a plate. Dust the cake with some cacao or cocoa powder and sprinkle with a pinch of salt – sprinkle from a good height to get a nice even fall of salt. I like to serve this with some good cream or yoghurt, and a few berries on the side. I love the sharpness of redcurrants, but for a sweeter option, strawberries or raspberries work too – just choose whatever’s in season. f
Photograph by Andrew Burton
HIS TORTE IS wickedly rich and indulgent, which in my eyes is exactly how a cake should be,” Dudley says of this family-favourite recipe that’s conveniently both impressive and easy to make. If sea salt isn’t your thing, feel free to omit it – replacing it with espresso powder works brilliantly, or you could just leave it as straight chocolate. We bet this cake would go down a treat with a good, strong cup of coffee or tea.
Norwegian seafood is all about quality.
Our fishermen take a very hard line on it. A quarter of all our fishing is done with hook and line. It’s not the easiest way of doing things. But it’s very friendly to the ocean. It also results in landing the most pristine fish, perfect for the kind of firm, succulent fillets you’re proud to put on your table. Look for delicious, sustainable Norwegian seafood in your supermarket. seafoodfromnorway.co.uk
Richard H Turner
IT’S TIME TO TAKE ACTION
How can the restaurant industry put sustainability front and centre? Our columnist has a few ideas, but says diners are the ones who can bring about big changes
OOK UP THE word sustainability in the OED and it’s defined as ‘the avoidance of the depletion of natural resources in order to maintain an ecological balance’. On the face of it, that sounds a long way removed from the goings-on of London’s kitchens and dining rooms, but it’s a word you’ll hear used increasingly by restaurateurs, as society’s collective awareness of sustainability grows and it becomes less acceptable for us to plunder nature in pursuit of our gastronomic pleasure. That in part explains why the Sustainable
Restaurant Association – a non-profit that promotes exactly what you’d imagine it promotes – has grown from only a handful of members to more than 4,000 in just a few years, and its president, Raymond Blanc, claims to value sustainability awards above his Michelin stars. In fact, the SRA grades its member restaurants across the three pillars of sourcing, society and environment, awarding one to three stars – much like Michelin does. At its simplest level, sustainability in restaurants means not throwing good food away, but there’s a host of other important things restaurateurs can do to help the planet, such as recycling almost all of our waste, and introducing LED lighting or compact fluorescent bulbs. These use 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs and last ten times longer, giving them both an environmental and economic advantage. Turning off computers and POS systems at night can also save significant amounts of energy over the course of a year. By installing electronic filing software like Sharepoint and Workplace in restaurant offices, documents can be accessed online rather than printed off. A conscious choice can be made to use hybrid cars for taxis and couriers. It’s a simple thing to implement, but can make a big difference in terms of CO2 emissions, as can using video conferencing to talk to external companies instead of travelling to meet one another. Bars, too, can work towards more sustainable practices. This includes removing drinks that have an unseasonal garnish;
reducing the number of drinks that use egg white to reduce wastage of the yolks; creating a house syrup that uses garnishes left over at the end of the night that would normally go to waste; using in-house filtration systems to eliminate the need for bottled water. Suppliers also have responsibilities, and there are now those that only trade in ethical, extensively farmed and sustainable produce, and that cut down on delivery and packaging materials and use eco-friendly transport. The criteria for evaluating the sustainability of seafood differs from that for agriculture. Restaurants should be informed and demand that suppliers are informed, too. If they can’t explain where their fish is from, and how and when it was caught, restaurants probably shouldn’t be serving it. Recently there has been some activity in aquaponics
CUSTOMERS CAN TAKE A STAND AND SUPPORT PLACES WITH A SUSTAINABLE AND ETHICAL ETHOS
Photograph by: [Bottles] Westend61 GmbH / Alamy Stock Photo; [Amanda Brame] Lewis McCarthy
– companies such as GrowUp Urban Farms in Beckton grow herbs and salads on water in a tank that also contains fish such as tilapia or trout. Nutrients from the fish waste feed the plants; in turn, the plants clean the water for the fish. All in all, it’s a rather neat little cycle. It’s perhaps ironic to see a return to traditional methods of cooking, eating and living that adhere to ‘old fashioned’ principles of ‘waste not want not’, nose-to-tail eating, seasonality, and preserving food, only this time with the added advantage of technology. However, one obstacle to sustainable restaurants may not be in the hands of the restaurateurs, but in those of the customer. Diners often expect bountiful choice, but running a truly sustainable restaurant means cooking locally and seasonally sourced ingredients. While as many ingredients as possible can be sourced from the UK – from meat and fish to bread and sugar, reducing air miles and minimising the impact on the environment – in the depths of winter, this can prove quite restrictive to menus. Customers can vote with their feet and frequent less sustainable restaurants that offer ingredients flown in from warmer climes, or they can decide to take a stand and support restaurants with a sustainable and ethical ethos. And this, really, is the crux of the matter. Sustainability is not just a philosophy about food – it’s about people, attitudes, communities, and lifestyles, and small changes and efforts can make a big difference. f
OPEN SEASON SE ASONAL PR ODUC E AND W HE R E TO F IND I T This month, chef, writer and sustainable food evangelist Tom Hunt talks you through celeriac, which is in season from now until March Celeriac takes prize position on my table during the winter months for being the ugliest yet tastiest vegetable. Try roasting it to bring out its intense nuttiness, serving it with crème fraîche, or make a snowy white purée, which is rounded and sweet. You can even eat celeriac raw, thinly sliced in salads or made into a crunchy remoulade, smothered with mayonnaise. Celeriac can discolour quickly. This won’t affect the flavour, but if you want to make a white purée, you can keep its colour by putting the prepared celeriac in
THE URBAN GARDENER
Petersham Nurseries’ Amanda Brame tells us how to make use of a small city garden. Here’s what you should be doing in early autumn Harvest time is here! Time to reap the rewards and enjoy tasty home-grown treats. Hopefully you’re still picking tomatoes, peppers, chillis, beans and courgettes. Remove any old tatty or yellowing leaves – these have done their job by now and this will allow extra light to get to the crop to aid ripening. If your plots and containers are looking tatty and leaves are on the turn, with no more edibles to harvest – clear them out. Compost any material except the very diseased, and pest-ridden. Believe it or not, though, there’s still plenty more to grow through the next few months. Top-up containers with fresh compost, a handful of poultry manure or comfrey pellets, lightly fork it over and start again. You can either sow direct into the ground/container with winter lettuces, rocket, winter purslane, mustards, kale and chard, or, alternatively, small plug
a bowl of water with a squeeze of lemon. Choose a firm root that feels heavy for its size, as the centre can become light, fluffy and unusable. It keeps best in the fridge, although room temperature is fine if needed. The tough skin is actually edible after a good wash, but increases the cooking time slightly. Cut off the rough roots from the base but leave the rest of the skin for extra fibre, taste and nutrition. f The Natural Cook by Tom Hunt is available now (Quadrille, £20). For more on Tom and his food projects, see tomsfeast.com
plants should now be available to plant. Luckily these crops will also tolerate a shady spot, as full sun on urban plots is hard to find in the height of summer, let alone the beginning of autumn… f Amanda Brame is deputy head of horticulture at Petersham Nurseries; petershamnurseries.com. Read the column in full at fdsm.co/columns
AT THE TABLE… As a veteran of Devon’s River Cottage, Gill Meller knows a thing or two about sustainability. Here he tells us how easy it can be to be sustainable in the city
USTAINABILITY MIGHT JUST be one of this year’s buzzwords, but when it comes to food, the issue’s never really been off the table. Just ask Gill Meller, author of award-winning cookbook Gather and group head chef of River Cottage. Originally a restaurant that came to the fore when celebrated chef and sustainability campaigner Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall appeared on our TV screens in 1998, the enterprise is now made up of a cookery school and three canteens in Bristol, Axminster and Winchester. But for the month of September, it’s finally coming to London, and bringing its handson, ethical ethos along with it. Meller tells us what sustainability means to him, and why it’s not as hard to be sustainable in a city as you might think it is.
RIVER COTTAGE AT BOROUGH
I approach sustainability through a cook’s eyes. For most conscientious cooks and chefs, sustainability in food production – in the UK and globally – should be at the forefront of their minds on a day-to-day basis. There’s never been a more important time to think about how our food is produced and where it’s coming from, and the impact that’s having on the environment around us. I’ve always had the mentality to cook seasonally and source locally, and we’ve always been big advocates of that approach at River Cottage. It goes hand-in-hand with sustainability, and in some ways it promotes sustainability without even shouting about it. If we can support the farmers, growers and producers that are working in a sustainable way, then that in turn creates ripples in the pond. It’s so important because – as cooks and chefs – we are setting trends. The public will quite often look to idols in the food world for inspiration to see what they’re doing, so it’s up to us to lead the way and encourage people to think about sustainability when they’re cooking at home.
Why do you think sustainability has suddenly become so important? In a way, things have come full circle. Prewar, food production was sustainable. It’s only since the industrialisation of food and farming that we’ve lost a handle on the effects that our modern-day food systems are having on the environment and everything that surrounds it – it’s not that sustainable food production has never existed before. Such is the seriousness of the situation now that we have no option but to realise it’s essential that we shop and cook with sustainability in mind, like we used to. We used to grow our own vegetables and herbs and fruit at home; we used to have the space and time to keep a few of our own livestock animals at our home that would feed the family. That way of life can no longer exist
for everyone, but that doesn’t mean we can’t think much more about where our food is coming from and where it’s being produced, and support the people who are doing things properly and respectfully.
How do you think sustainable cooking and eating in cities like London differs from that in rural areas? There’s a sense of irony that, when you live in a city, you have easier access to independent shops but you are further removed from where the food comes from. I live quite rurally and although we’ve got a number of small growers and farmers nearby, they’re not necessarily that obvious and you might not know they were there. From a practical sense, for most people living rurally, it’s just easier to do your shopping in the big local supermarkets, whereas people living in the city can be a stone’s throw from an independent retailer who has an ethical, sustainable range of really good produce that’s available seven days a week, even though they might be less in tune with the environment.
How have attitudes changed since you started, and what part have you, Hugh [Fearnley-Whittingstall] and the River Cottage played in that? It’s in the last decade that we’ve seen the biggest change in mindset across the hospitality sector. River Cottage has always been an advocate for sustainable living and we’ve always been true to that, but even in that relatively short time, things have changed: views have been tweaked and honed; approaches have been shaped to allow for changes in mindset and legislation. For example, back then we were using fish that we quite possibly wouldn’t use now because we’re much more aware of changes in the fisheries. When I started at River Cottage we would occasionally use eel, but within four or five years we’d stopped using it entirely because ultimately it wasn’t a sustainable option for our menus. You gradually change the way you →
Photograph by Rene Mansi
Throughout September, a series of River Cottage-style cookery masterclasses, free talks and events will take place at Borough Market – a partnership that will celebrate both establishments’ approach to produce. Gill will be hosting a nose-to-tail cookery class designed to show guests how to make the most of lesser-known cuts of meat, and embrace the nose-to-tail philosophy across the breadth of their cooking, including vegetables and salad. He’ll also be holding a workshop inspired by his stunning debut cookbook Gather (which came out in 2016), that’ll showcase alternative ways to source the best-quality produce. Elsewhere, on 21 September, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall will be hosting a vegetable feast created by River Cottage head chef Gelf Anderson made with produce from some of the market’s stalls. Find out more at rivercottage.net
How does your view on sustainability in the food industry affect the way you approach your cooking?
WILD MAN: Gill Meller is a champion of sustainable eating, and will be coming to London to share his tips in September
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IT’LL BE BETTER FOR THE PLANET IF WE EAT A MORE PLANTBASED DIET → behave in any environment, depending on the wider circumstances. More recently, we’re cooking and eating more veg than we used to at River Cottage, and promoting the fact that we should be eating a veg-heavy diet. Are vegetarianism and veg-focused cooking the way forward? I’m not an expert, but from a cook’s point of view it’ll certainly be better for the planet if we’re eating much more fruit and vegetables and have a predominantly plant-based diet. It’s been proven that we can’t continue to eat meat at the rate we are, because there’s just not the land globally to produce it at the level we are consuming it, so we have to change our eating habits anyway, no matter what. And the only way we could scale up our meat production is by further intensifying the process, which has all sorts of ethical questions that we’d need to confront.
and from a general health point of view. You and your family will be benefiting from the effects of sustainable shopping and eating. It’s hard to find a downside.
Aside from all the benefits for the land, why should people try to eat more sustainably?
What advice can you offer for people who are looking to cook more sustainably at home?
It boils down to what ingredients you consider to be sustainable. If we were to say that most plants grown organically or without the uses of fertilizers and pesticides and so forth can be considered sustainable, you could say that the benefits are not only being felt by the environment but by the producer, by the grower, by the farmer, and by the community in the area in which that food is being produced as well. Then, of course, if you’re eating a diet that’s sustainable it’s more than likely it’ll be healthy so you’ll be benefiting from a nutritional point of view,
It’s possible to get your food directly from the source. If you do that, you eradicate the middle men and as a direct result the farmer or the producer gets the best possible price for their produce. That’s the ideal scenario but it’s obviously not something that happens all the time, although you can at least do some of your shopping in that way. It might be as simple as going to a farmer’s market and actually meeting the producer and farmer and talking about their ingredients and taking them home with you. The farmer is getting the best possible price
KEEP IT SIMPLE: In his book, Gather, Meller brings together recipes inspired by his surroundings and local ingredients
for their stuff and you’re getting, more often than not, the freshest produce in the best condition from a place you have confidence in. It might be as simple as picking up some eggs from a farm gate sale. Whatever it is, a little goes a long way. There’s a lot to be said even for supporting your local greengrocer or the local butcher. If you enjoy food and cooking at home, then ultimately the best advice I can give you is to cook seasonally. Find out what’s at its best at any one time, get out there and find it locally and treat the ingredients simply. If you’re cooking with great fresh stuff you don’t have to overcomplicate things. Think about how much you buy and don’t overspend and don’t be wasteful. One of the major ways that we can contribute to having a sustainable food system at home is by minimising how much waste we produce. It’s rewarding – and that’s the way cooking should be. f
RENEGAD E WINE
This machine isn’t unique in itself, but its location very much is – under the arches in Bethnal Green at Renegade London Wine, one of only two urban wineries in London. The Renegade team have taken things back to basics, and process, age, bottle, cork, label and wax their bottles in-house, pressing the grapes using hands and feet. It’s a refreshingly simple process that results in some wonderfully crafted wines that are available to sample in the winery’s lively bar. f renegadelondonwine.com
HEAVY MA CHINE RY
Photograph by David Harrison
We take a look at the bottling machine at an urban winery under a Bethnal Green railway arch 39
E L L A CANTA
London is fertile ground for international chefs: the brains behind Aquavit, StreetXO, La Dame de Pic and more, all of whom have garnered Michelin stars and graced the World’s 50 Best lists, have opened outposts here in recent times. Ella Canta is the first London restaurant by Martha Ortiz, whose Mexico City restaurant Dulce Patria is a staple of the country’s contemporary fine-dining scene. Head here for seriously modern takes on Mexican classics. 020 7318 8715; ellacanta.com
THE RADAR Hungry? Inquisitive? We take you through the best restaurant openings from now until October Grazing
SA NTO REMEDIO
The London restaurant community breathed a collective sigh of relief when husband-and-wife team Edson and Natalie Diaz-Fuentes hit their crowdfunding target and reopened the fantastic Santo Remedio in Tooley Street, after the first restaurant was forced to close. Expect more punchy flavours and mouthwatering tacos. SE1 2TU; santoremedio.co.uk
IC HIB U N S
E SSE NC E C U ISINE
The capital’s tendency towards plant-based cuisine shows no signs of slowing – especially not with an influx of veg-forward and vegan restaurants into the city’s food scene. Essence Cuisine’s Shoreditch restaurant – a project of Bart Ronan and influential US-based vegan chef Matthew Kenney – will put vegetables at centre-stage, so you’ll find punchy flavours and pretty plates that get the ‘grammers snapping. EC2A 4RH; essence-cuisine.com
VIL L A M AM A’S MID-SEPTEMBER
Middle-Eastern food is booming in London at the moment, and September will usher in one of the city’s first Bahraini restaurants in Villa Mama’s. The restaurant’s first outpost is in the country’s Saar district, and restaurateur Roaya Saleh will be hoping the London site garners as much acclaim as her first, with regional specialities like khubus flatbread and muhalabia rice pudding on the menu. SW3 3NT; villamamas.com
We don’t need to tell you to expect good things at the brandnew Christopher Place site of Sri Lankaninspired small-plate restaurant Hoppers. We’d advise getting a head start on the queues, though. W1U 1QE; hopperslondon.com
‘Luxury fast food’ with punky Japanese twists? Sign us up. This restaurant will be dishing up bites like a wagyu burger inside a sake yeast bun, and contemporary cocktails, too. W1D 6QH; ichibuns.co.uk
LA F R OM A G ER I E
A third site is upcoming for this cheese shop, bar, café and tasting room, with a focus on artisanal cheeses from Europe. WC1N 3LL; lafromagerie.co.uk
coconut water straight from the nut.
100% pure, for the freshest taste. Read more about our unique process* and sustainable farm at obrigado.com ObrigadoUK
T hank you nature!
* Our coconut water goes straight from the coconuts into your bottle. Never exposed to light or air for the freshest and purest taste possible.
B R ATI E N L
Photographs by (Zoe) David Harrison; (Coffee) Probuxtor [Ham] Eugene Mymrin/Getty
T GOES WITHOUT saying that we love good food and drink at foodism. But we especially love good food and drink that has the potential to effect change. It’s not just that eating and drinking sustainably and ethically is good for the planet. It’s that it results in what we’ve been
IN ASSOCIATION WITH
striving for since our first issue: better food and drink, and a better system of venues, businesses and producers making it. That’s the reason why we felt strongly enough about the people doing great things in sustainable food and social enterprising in London and beyond to devote a whole issue of our magazine to telling their stories. So when we were choosing a way to reward those venues and businesses that make London so special, we could think of nothing better than to focus on those businesses who do good things in food and drink. From the best restaurants with a sustainable edge to the cafés who are helping coffee farmers earn a fair wage, the social enterprises giving people a much-needed second chance and the street-food traders changing the way fast food impacts the environment, these awards represent the cream of the crop in London’s sustainable and ethical food and drink scene. The foodism 100, sponsored by Southern Comfort, will take the form of a 100-strong
shortlist, of which ten category winners will be revealed at an event in autumn. The categories are: best casual restaurant; best fine-dining restaurant; best bar ; best pub; best café; best pop-up or residency; best street-food trader; best food market; best social enterprise; positive change hero. Now get nominating! f
HOW TO ENTER
Think your business – or your favourite local joint – should be considered for the foodism 100? Head to fdsm.co/100 to submit your nomination, or shout about your favourite venue or business on social media using #foodism100 and tell them why they should enter. Our panel will review the entries, and we’ll announce the final 100 – and the ten category winners – at an event in late autumn. Keep an eye on foodism.co.uk for news on the date and venue.
THE WATER OF LIFE There’s no secret to Norwegian seafood – a mixture of rich heritage, sustainable farming, and cold, clear waters guarantee its high quality for generations to come
OU DON’T EARN a reputation for some of the finest seafood on the planet without making a commitment to sustainability somewhere along the line. And you certainly don't find premium quality produce in an environment that's overfished, underloved and poorly regulated. That's why Norwegian fish, which comes from some of the best-cared-for waters in the world, is among the finest
NORWEGIAN FISH IS AMONG THE FINEST SEAFOOD SERVED AROUND THE WORLD
seafood served in thousands of homes, restaurants and humble fish and chips shops around the world. When you think about it, it's simple: the best, highest-quality and most flavoursome seafood naturally comes from fish that are given the freedom to explore their natural habitat – whether it be in the wild or in spacious ocean farms with sustainable diets. But in a world where extreme demand
WIN A FLINT & FLAME KNIFE SET
We’ve teamed up with Norwegian Seafood and Flint & Flame to offer one lucky reader a Seafood Collection Knife Roll Bag worth more than £400. The prize includes a 3” Folding Knife, 3.5” Paring Knife, 6” Santoku Knife and 7” Fillet Knife. To enter, just answer one question. For a full list of T&Cs and to enter, go to fdsm.co/flint-and-flame
could drive sustainable fishing to breaking point, how is it possible to keep pace, delivering more fish at the same exceptional quality for generations to come? The answer is actually pretty simple: careful stewardship. Norway was the first nation to adopt a quota system, it also introduced a discard ban in 1987, and it continues to negotiate quotas annually with its neighbours in Russia, Iceland, Greenland and the EU today. This stewardship of the waters allows fish to exist in abundance and thrive, which doesn't just mean more fish for the future, but bigger, better tasting seafood right now. Add to this a rigorous traceability scheme that means all seafood must be certified along the entire supply chain, from catcher through to caterer, and you've got a watertight system that ensures quality, sustainability and a great source of fish for posterity. But it's not just legislation. So much of Norway's attitude to great seafood is a deeply ingrained part of the country's culture and heritage. For generations and generations, being Norwegian has meant looking to the sea for your main source of food. So now – be it fjordside or out on the
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: A busy fishing port in Norway; a salmon farmer carefully checks his fish; a day boat used to catch Skrei cod; a sustainable salmon farm in the Norwegian sea
KNOW YOUR FISH Decode Norway's prized seafood species with this quick guide to the species Cod
More than 60% of cod eaten in the UK comes from the fertile waters of the Barents Sea. Such is our hunger for cod that eating only what lives in our own waters would be impossible. Norway’s cod is so good because of all the things that make Norway’s seafood tradition so heralded: careful handling, large fillets, flaky flesh, and transported to its destination within hours.
Much has been made of the dwindling haddock stocks around the north of the UK, but Norway’s are in rude health. As with cod, the UK is the biggest consumer of haddock in the world, eating around 120,000 tonnes annually. Around 70% of that comes straight from the Barents Sea.
Norway sets the standard for sustainable salmon farming worldwide, with nets that ensure only 2.5% of space is the fish itself, with the other 97.5% the cold, clear water it calls home. Norwegian aquaculture standards mean that its salmon is fed only natural products, with no antibiotics used.
Skrei is the jewel in Norwegian seafood’s crown – it’s a classification that denotes superior quality cod, caught wild on their 1,000km return to their spawning grounds, and only available from January to April. Only 10-13% of cod caught in Norway earn the Skrei tag.
deep waters of the Barents Sea – locals have a connection to the water that’s quite unlike anywhere else in the world, purely because the places they fish are the same ones their ancestors fished for generations before them, and future generations will keep on fishing for many, many years to come. Well, not quite the same as their ancestors fished, because if anything, Norwegian fisheries are getting even better. With an intricate and intelligent approach to salmon aquaculture, Norway's ocean-farmed salmon are raised in pens that are 97.5% cold, clear water and 2.5% fish, which means plenty of swimming room and absolutely no overcrowding. As a result, salmon can be sustainably sourced all year round, and at a quality that's just as good raw as sushi or sashimi as it is smoked, pan-fried or oven-baked. Norwegian cod, meanwhile, is caught wild and carefully handled, which ensures its meat flakes perfectly and always yields the largest, best tasting and succulent fillets, which is all the more vital here in the UK, where our love of fish and chips contributes to us being one of the biggest cod and haddock markets in the world. In fact, approximately 60% of the cod we eat comes from the Barents Sea – the part of the Arctic Ocean off the north coast of Norway that contains some of the biggest stocks of cod and haddock. So next time you tuck into a fillet of cod at home, from a takeaway, or at a restaurant in London, chances are you're enjoying the unique flavour of sustainably sourced Norwegian cod or haddock. The pinnacle of Norwegian produce, however, is Skrei cod – the top 10-13% of wild cod caught fully grown and in immaculate condition between January and April. With its light and lean flesh, silky smooth flavour and firm flakes, it's earned a reputation as the cod of choice for top chefs the world over, and its freshness and
FROM TOP: A beautifully rich piece of Norwegian salmon, cured in dark, flavoursome beetroot and served with caper berries and bread; ultra-premium, quality-tagged Skrei cod
quality is undeniable. But whatever fish you favour, the good news for you is that not only does Norwegian seafood allow you to dine with a clear conscience, but with fishing so carefully thought-out and painstakingly regulated, whenever you see the Seafood From Norway mark of origin, you're not just seeing a mark of sustainable fishing and regional provenance, you're seeing a stamp of
Photograph by ###
THE PINNACLE OF NORWEGIAN PRODUCE IS SKREI COD, WITH ITS LIGHT AND LEAN FLESH, SILKY SMOOTH FLAVOUR AND FIRM FLAKES
superior quality and expert scientific management. So whether you fancy a piece of ocean-farmed salmon, fjord trout, wild-caught cod, haddock or the highquality Skrei cod that's totally unique to Norway: go fish, we implore you. â—? For more informartion, go to seafoodfromnorway.co.uk, or follow the Norwegian Seafood Council on Facebook at @seafoodfromnorway, or on Twitter and Instagram at @norwayseafood
— PART 2 —
FEAST “I THOUGHT: WE DON’T NEED MORE PRODUCTION, WE DON’T NEED MORE FOOD. WE NEED TO WASTE LESS” ICONIC CHEF MASSIMO BOTTURA ON WHY HE STARTED CHARITY FOOD FOR SOUL, 071
050 HOW BRANDS APPROACH SUSTAINABILITY | 058 MR LYAN 064 BEYOND THE MENU | 076 FOOD BYPRODUCTS | 082 MIXOLOGY: SCOUT
THE WORLD IS OURS Now more than ever, food and drink brands are realising the importance of sustainability. These ones are making a difference
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ET’S SAY YOU’VE got a chicken coop in your back garden. You’ve got three or four egg-laying hens, which you count on for enough eggs a week for your breakfast at the weekend. With that few moving parts, it’s relatively straightforward to ensure they’re happy, healthy, and the whole operation is done with sustainability in mind. If you have hundreds of thousands of chickens, spread over hundreds of hectares of farmland, it becomes harder. And it’s the same if you’re producing hundreds of thousands of litres of wine or spirits, tonnes of fish, sandwiches, or bags of coffee. The point is, when food and drink businesses scale up their production and begin trading at a national or international level, ensuring sustainability is built into all facets of the operation becomes less straightforward. But the flip-side to that argument is these are the businesses that can influence change on a wider scale. They’re the ones who can set an example to the rest of their industry, and who can communicate their messages to the casual consumer, as well as the already converted. That’s why we’ve asked some of our favourite big companies to tell us about aspects of sustainability they feel particularly strongly about, and explain how they built solutions into their businesses. From carbonneutral winemaking to empowering female coffee farmers in the developing world, their answers were as eclectic as the companies themselves. Read on to find out...
Antonio Rodriguez, production director The problem
Once production begins in any industry, waste is inevitably produced. Tequila is distilled from the native Weber blue agave, but not every part of this Mexican plant is used in the distillation process. The spirit is made using just three simple ingredients: agave, water and yeast. It takes a lot of water to make it, and in the tequila industry, for every litre of liquid made, there are several more litres of ‘stillage’ – (leftover distillate) produced.
THE CORNISH SEAFOOD PROJECT
Matt Slater, marine awareness officer, Cornwall Wildlife Trust The problem
People associate Cornwall with clean seas and busy fishing ports, but our market research shows that many people are, understandably, concerned about sustainability. No one wants to support overfishing or damaging practices. There is a vast amount of confusing, sometimes conflicting, information out there on the subject. The media tends to focus on negative stories, but arguably Cornwall’s seafood industry has never been more sustainable, and we need to support fishermen who are doing the right thing and improving the way they work. Fisheries management is difficult to perfect, but many fish stocks in the south west are healthier than ever, and better protected, too. Despite this, many people don’t eat local seafood and are more likely to eat prawns farmed in Thailand, or bass farmed in the Mediterranean. Fishermen are often at the mercy of exporters, and the threat of increased trade tariffs after Brexit make it even more important that we develop UK markets for sustainable Cornish seafood.
At Patrón Tequila we hand-harvest only the highest quality Weber blue agave, respect the traditional distillation process, and individually inspect each bottle. The same care and attention is taken to reduce our waste and impact on the environment at each stage of production. At Hacienda Patrón, our distillery in the Highlands of Jalisco, Mexico, two initiatives we have developed to limit the environmental impact of production are a state-of-the-art reverse osmosis procedure, and also an industry-leading compost process. The reverse osmosis process recovers clean water from the stillage, by using high pressure to pass the water through a series of semipermeable membrane filters. Up to 70% of the water is recovered from this, which we then reuse in our facilities’ cooling towers, and for cleaning. The remaining stillage is used to treat our compost area. Then, instead of disposing of leftover agave as waste, we take
Cornwall Wildlife Trust has created Cornwall Good Seafood Guide, a user-friendly website, and sustainability brand. The aim is to help us all make good seafood choices, and encourage us to source sustainable Cornish seafood. The project has been running for three years now and is produced in collaboration with the Marine Conservation Society’s Good Fish Guide. Working with the fishing industry, upto-date local information on fish stocks and management to clearly spell out the most sustainable seafood on offer. Our homepage is packed with sustainable seafood that’s currently in season, and we have also created a ‘recommended’ brand which can be used by our supporters to highlight sustainable seafood on menus, packaging and websites. More than 70 companies including Nathan Outlaw, Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall and the Eden Project are now signed up as supporters. You don’t have to be based in Cornwall to do so, as long as you offer sustainable Cornish fish to your customers. We’re hoping that the scheme will incentivise the continued improvement in Cornwall’s sustainable fishing industry. cornwallgoodseafoodguide.org.uk
NATHAN OUTLAW, JAMIE OLIVER AND THE EDEN PROJECT SUPPORT OUR INITIATIVE
Matt Slater on the Cornwall Good Seafood Guide
Hazel Culley, sustainability manager, Marks & Spencer
the tissue, or “bagasse”, and blend it with the remaining concentrated stillage to create an organic compost. This compost is then used to grow crops in the Hacienda's organic vegetable garden, helping provide food for our 1,600 Hacienda employees, and our many visitors. The compost is also used to fertilise the agave fields and is given to the town to use for free. We are proud to be recognised by CONAGUA (the Mexican federal water authority), and SEMADET (the Jalisco state environmental agency), as a leader in implementing efforts to help the environment in Mexico. patrontequila.com
OUR COMPOST IS GIVEN FREE FOR THE TOWN TO USE
– Antonio Rodriguez
Ensuring there is a good availability of products for customers while minimising the levels of unsold food at the end of the day is a tough balancing act, and one that all food retailers face. Offering discounts for products that are nearing their expiry date is the first step to reducing food waste, but a solution was needed to ensure that where there is a food surplus it goes to the best possible use. With hundreds of M&S stores nationwide, each with different operating hours and varying levels of surplus food, a one-size-fits-all approach wasn’t a practical option for us. We needed a system that allowed local charities to identify the surplus food available at their local stores, to ensure it reaches those most in need, while also conforming to the logistical barriers of useby dates and food safety regulations.
In October 2015, Marks & Spencer began working with Neighbourly, the social network for good, to provide an innovative, practical solution to surplus food redistribution. It allowed us to build local connections, and enabled all our stores to link with local food projects and help support their communities. Initially we connected all our stores to local charity partners, to donate food such as fruit, vegetables, bread, cakes and groceries like pasta and cooking sauces (products that are safe to eat beyond their best-befre date). However, as a predominately chilled food business, we wanted to go further. Chilled foods typically have a short shelf life, so we looked very carefully at how we could best donate these items to our charity partners. Through the Neighbourly platform, we have ensured that the charities registered for chilled collections have refrigeration to transport and store chilled food, as well as having the correct food hygiene credentials in place. This August we started to roll out chilled donations to all our owned stores nationwide and have donated over 1.6 million meals to those in need to date. marksandspencer.com
Photograph by ###
Jim Moseley, CEO The problem
Large-scale farming done well is what feeds this country, and when you see the Red Tractor label on a pack of British food you can be sure it has been done extremely well. As an example, chicken is the nation’s favourite meat and its popularity is growing, with each of us eating around 23kg of chicken every year. This, coupled with a steadily increasing population, means that British chicken producers have a pressing challenge on their hands: how do they increase productivity, without compromising the values that we demand from our food?
Red Tractor provides complete standards for chicken production, but at their heart is bird health and welfare. British consumers are keen to know how their food is produced, and welfare often tops the list. Our farmers deliver world-leading welfare for their livestock, and we keep pace with developments, as the science of welfare is always progressing. This is our bedrock, and everything we do to ensure a plentiful supply of safe, wholesome and nutritious food is built upon it. If chicken is to continue to be affordable and available for everyone, then we need to be more productive without using any more resources. Red Tractor standards give farmers the structure, whether it be indoor- or outdoorreared – so from there it comes down to how they are applied. It is the farmers, and the skill and experience they bring to their industry that has the greatest impact on the success of livestock production. Red Tractor standards are open to scrutiny, and stand up against any others around the world. Alongside welfare, the UK is leading the way in slashing the use of antibiotics and minimising the environmental impact of farming. British consumers should be proud of the integrity shown by our farmers in the face of immense pressure from imported food. At our core, every one of us wants to eat food we can trust, to know where it came from, how it was grown, that it is of good quality, and that it will be available again tomorrow, next week, and next year. The Red Tractor label is a true standard-bearer for what is of real importance, the trust and support of British food production. redtractor.org.uk
ALL OF US WANT FOOD WE CAN TRUST, AND TO KNOW WHERE IT CAME FROM
– Red Tractor CEO Jim Moseley on why the company does what it does
Elena Adell, chief winemaker The problem
Since 2001, Campo Viejo’s pioneering winery in Rioja, Spain has been a world-leader in winemaking, architecture and importantly, sustainability. We work to uphold the traditions of winemaking in the region, while continuing to innovate and respect the environment. Carbon dioxide is emitted at several important stages of the winemaking process and as the largest winemaker in Rioja, we needed to think hard about how we could minimise our carbon footprint. The process started when we were developing our brand-new winery in 2001. With the majority of the new winery located underground, we needed to look at new systems in the winemaking process that would help release the carbon; minimising the effect on the environment while still preserving the beauty of the Rioja landscape above ground.
In 2012 Campo Viejo became the first Spanish Winery to achieve Carbon Neutral certification. It was a benchmark in the Spanish wine industry, achieved through a state-of-the-art winery and pioneering practices. From the preservation of 83 hectares of vineyards and woodland, to the the transportation of grapes from field to the fermentation tanks, we have looked at both new and traditional methods to help us reduce our carbon footprint. In 2016, Campo Viejo received the stamp ‘Calculate, Reduce and Offset’, promoted by the Spanish Agriculture Ministry (MAGRAMA). We have also replanted an area in Revilla Cabriada (Burgos) with diverse plant life to help offset direct emissions. We are as passionate about innovation in wine as we are in sustainable winemaking practices, and we’ll continue to seek new ways to ensure we do everything possible to keep reducing our emissions, and to give back to the people and land of Rioja. campoviejo.com
WE HAVE TO MAKE VEGGIE FOOD AS INTERESTING AS POSSIBLE
– Caroline Cromar, Pret A Manger
PRET A MANGER
Caroline Cromar, brand director The problem
Climate change is a very real issue, and many experts believe the growing appetite for more animal-based products around the world is a significant driver of this. In 2015 we started to see an increase in Pret’s vegetarian sales, and customers asking for more vegetarian and vegan options. Whatever the reason for this shift – whether directly related to the environment, or for health or animal welfare reasons – we want to make sure we’re supporting our customers choice to eat less meat if they choose to. So how does a company like Pret (whose most popular product is our Chicken Caesar & Bacon baguette) help customers eat less meat? And how do we do so without preaching to them about their choices? It has to be around making veggie food more interesting to as many people as possible; creating really delicious vegetarian recipes that appeal to everyone, not just existing veggies.
Photograph by ###
Listening to customers and reacting quickly to their feedback has been absolutely key to this. We started with a poll on our CEO’s blog, asking customers what they wanted to see next from us in the vegetarian space. It was very well-subscribed, with more than 10,000 votes from veggies, vegans and meat-eaters, who told us that they were interested in seeing standalone vegetarian fridges and standalone vegetarian Pret shops (both of which we have now trialled). Our two Veggie Prets have proven particularly popular with customers, and have allowed us to trial brand-new recipes that we wouldn’t otherwise be able to, like our vegan mac & greens and vegan brownie. A third Veggie Pret and updated menu are now just around the corner. The ultimate aim of this is to make sure that all of our customers have access to fresh, interesting and delicious vegetarian and vegan options, giving them a better opportunity to follow a less animal-based and more plant-based diet as often as they want and as easily as possible. And as for those customers that aren’t up for ditching the chicken or bacon altogether? That’s absolutely fine, the ‘flexitarian’ diet is certainly growing in momentum . When they are eating meat, we just encourage customers to choose options that are reared to higher welfare standards. pret.com
Thomas Haigh, head of coffee The problem
The global coffee supply chain sees women do 70% of the work, agriculturally, managerially and on the farmstead, yet they receive minimal relative compensation, owning just 15% of the land and traded beans; in some countries, up to 75% of the work is carried out by women, although only 40% of the income is earned by these workers - five times less than men. Women make up at least half of the global coffee workforce and play a crucial role in the production system that often goes unnoticed. Given that coffee producers comprise communities in some of the poorest areas of the world, the added challenges that female producers face in the coffee chain are real, deep-rooted in socio-cultural traditions, and place them at a significant disadvantage through inequity and inequality. Social and cultural biases in favour of men reduce women’s access to land, inheritance, finance, agricultural input, education, training, healthcare, leadership opportunities and access to direct and indirect coffee markets. Female coffee producers are also less likely to have a say in household matters and are more likely to suffer from sexual, physical and psychological violence.
At Tate Coffee, we are attempting to raise the agenda of gender equality by championing women coffee producers. We aim to create a more level trading platform for all genders through our Gender Equality Project (GEP) and, since launching it last year, we have worked with cooperatives, organisations and farms around the world to engage with and support both women and men in coffee-growing communities. By purposely seeking out female producers who otherwise wouldn’t have import opportunities into the UK market, we are
presenting a voice and a platform for women, building sustainable, ethical relationships that will stand the test of time. When working with family producers, we support joint decision-making and ownership of income and resources, recognising and acknowledging the crucial roles of women in coffee producing households and farmsteads. When it comes to sourcing and purchasing Specialty raw coffee, our ethos is focused on ‘Quality, Equality and Sustainability’. This means our seasonal, rotational single-estate and singlefarm coffees are sourced equally between male and female producers. Currently, 75% of our coffee range is represented by independent female coffee producers, all of whom we have made the effort to visit and instigate direct relationships with. We see this as a fair representation of the percentage of work carried out globally by women in the coffee chain. f tate.org.uk
– Thomas Haigh on gender inequality in coffee
Photograph by Statistics taken from the CQI Partnership for Gender Equity: The Way Forward, 2015
SOCIAL BIASES IN FAVOUR OF MEN REDUCE WOMEN’S ACCESS
Red Tractor standards cover animal welfare, food safety, traceability and environmental protection.
INDEPENDENTLY APPROVED STANDARDS FOR GREAT FOOD AND FARMING # TRUST THE TRACTOR
INTO THE LYANâ€™S DEN Cocktail alchemist Ryan Chetiyawardana, aka Mr Lyan, tells Victoria Stewart how heâ€™s planning on showing a new side to sustainability at his latest venture, Cub
LEADER OF THE PACK: Having conquered the world of the cocktail bar, Ryan Chetiyawardanaâ€™s latest project, Cub, is a restaurant as well, and has sustainability at its core
Photograph by ###
MIX MASTER: [clockwise from here] Ryan behind the bar; brined yellow tomato and seaweed, one of the new dishes at Cub; the Catkin cocktail at Dandelyan
ONDON, WE HAVE a problem. There’s stuff we need to sort out together. It’s exciting! But first can we sit down and have a great cocktail and some food and a chat? We’ll get to that problem later. This is how I think Ryan Chetiyawardana goes about his business. As one of London’s most-loved bartenders and co-founder of Dandelyan, Super Lyan and White Lyan (now closed, more on which later) bars, he’s always busy, and has a feast of ideas on what to do about the industry’s most pressing issues. But first he’d like to ask how you are, and what you’re excited about this week (he says ‘exciting’ a lot, which is infectious).
MR LYAN HAS WON EVERY PRIZE AND ACCOLADE THE DRINKS WORLD CAN GIVE HIM
In her new book about whisky, author Rachel McCormack sums him up as ‘the Ferran Adria [the founder of El Bulli restaurant in Spain] and David Lynch of the spirit world. No one is as thoughtful or as innovative as him in the drinks arena. When he launched his brand, Mr Lyan, he had a cocktail of Talisker and oak leaf maturing in a salt-baked cask that he poured straight from the barrel into a glass. He has won every prize and every accolade that the drinks world can give him; mention his name to people in the drinks business and all they have are kind words and admiration.’ So we could end there, except there’s news to share, and insect dim sum to discuss.
Photograph (Cub) by Xavier D. Buendia/XDB Photography
My previous interactions with Mr Lyan have included spending time in the Chelsea Physic Garden hearing about why it is that certain plants grow and taste the way that they do, and why that makes them delicious and interesting to use in drinks; and sitting down to sample menus of pre-batched (that’s pre-made, allowing for fewer wasted ingredients) cocktails that take around seven months to research and launch. This time I’m here to talk about sustainability, and about Cub, a new venue that he’s launched on the former site of White Lyan on Hoxton Street, where with the help of a natural scientist they’re growing all sorts of things “like herbs that won’t taste like herbs when you try them.” It’s a partnership with Doug McMaster, his pal from Silo, the zero-waste Brighton restaurant, whose “inventiveness and character and the way he looks at things” Chetiyawardana is drawn to. Specifically Cub will be a bar-restaurant because “half of the stuff that we do for the bars is essentially kitchen stuff anyway,” and the menu will include a range of experimental things like “Japanese knotweed, raw sheep’s milk and ramson”. Their aim is first to provide “something comfortable and exciting that offers delicious food and drink and helps bring people together,” and second to show that in 2017 “people have a skewed sense of value with food and drink. They see it as cheap, endless and throwaway… People have lost a sense of value towards [it]. We’ve sold out our food systems, and people don’t seem to connect the dots of the issues of that. [With] Cub [we’re] aiming to shine a light on this, and the fact that changing habits will improve the scenario. But we want to show that sustainability need not be about sacrifice, so we don’t want to be too worthy or heavy handed with the messaging.” Great. So how do you go about creating something that feels fun and tells a story, but not like you’re eco warrior-ing your way into the personal space of guests paying £9-£14 per drink (as at his other bars)? “We didn’t want any of the bars to be about recycled stuff [although incidentally Cub’s bar is made out of recycled materials, but it’s not necessarily obvious] – it needed to feel exciting and aspirational, and wonderful, and cutting edge, but still feel like something that people could participate in rather than being something for a certain elite or bracket.” Really, it’s this approach that nails why Chetiyawardana has become so popular. Looking at it another way, he argues that they’re offering “what we think is really good
WE WANT TO SHOW THAT SUSTAINABILITY NEED NOT BE ABOUT SACRIFICE value” not only because of what goes in on the research and development side, but also “the human aspect, too – all the people who are part of our project. Because we bring things in-house [they make nearly all of their spirits, syrups, vinegars and their no-grape ‘wine’], and we take ownership of a lot of other things, we’re fronting much of that cost, but we’re still paying fairly all the way down that line… That sounds throwaway, but it’s not universal.” To Chetiyawardana, something like staff wages is not so much about best practice or sustainability, but about doing something that’s blooming obvious. “It’s like equality and feminism that shouldn’t exist as words. [What they stand for] should just be the norm, but it’s not, so it needs words to stand up for it… I think without people knowing that they want [sustainability], they do want it, because it’s a very universal thing, and it affects everybody.” In spite of this, he’s “amazed” by how quickly “the sustainability stuff” has gathered momentum, “because it has not been that long a conversation, really.” So what of people catching onto sustainability as a trendy thing? “Hey, if sustainability becomes a trend, then it becomes less stigmatised, and more universal, but in any case I think that people will connect with the ideas for different reasons. I’ve said that we live in a bubble [doing this] to a certain extent, but we’re also reacting to what’s happening in the world. Food and drink is a reflection of a larger societal cultural shift, and I think people are caring more… I don’t think that the modern world wants to give up having bananas, or travelling all over the planet. What will make more of a difference is if people make more
demands and are more considerate about what they choose to buy.” Talking of caring, I ask Chetiyawardana, who grew up with Sri Lankan parents in Birmingham, enrolled briefly at its College of Food before studying philosophy at the University of Edinburgh and doing bar work on the side, whether these things have always been important to him. “We grew up in the kitchen, partly because mum was a chef at one point and because it was an important part of the family life, bringing people together through food. So eating everything that we had was part of what we did, but also because we didn’t have a lot of money, so you didn’t waste things… It doesn’t make sense. I always think that mentality is like charity. It doesn’t matter what your motives are but the motives for me are moral and ethical.” Really, though, his bigger ideas formed later on in 2010, following work at Edinburgh’s Bramble bar, and later London’s vaunted 69 Colebrooke Row and Worship Street Whistling Shop. Chetiyawardana was gradually developing the concept for White Lyan and becoming increasingly aware of →
→ how “stuck in its ways the industry was, and in creating this idea that just because something was luxury it had to be wasteful…” At this point he remembers a project
For more information, visit lyancub.com
ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK: The interior design of Cub combines a vibrant colour scheme with a pared-down aesthetic and classic marble bar
GET THE BOOK
Chetiyawardana’s new book brings together his carefully crafted cocktails with recipes by chefs from some of the world’s best restaurants (think Nuno Mendes and Tom Oldroyd). It’s split into sections such as ‘watching the game’ and ‘date night’, providing clever combinations to suit all sorts of occasions. Good Together: Drink & Feast with Mr Lyan and Friends by Ryan Chetiwawardana is out now (Frances Lincoln, £20).
Photograph by Xavier Buendia
IF FORAGING BECAME GLOBALLY ADOPTED WE WOULDN’T HAVE ANY WILD FOOD LEFT
called Lunch in 2050 that he worked on with Shay Ola, the founder of creative food events company the Rebel Dining Society. Having decided to serve an insect burger to go alongside Chetiyawardana’s lecture, Ola suggested that they actually did dim sum instead “so that it wouldn’t be presented as insects, but just as something delicious.” And then he veers off to imagine something else: “The thing is, the small initiatives are amazing, especially the ones that get people excited or remove stigma, but actually if foraging became globally adopted we’d have no wild food left. Something like that is wonderful for educating people and talking about the breadth of flavour and genetic diversity out there, but it would actually be difficult if it became a mass trend. I see it more as an educational thing… It really all needs to be led from the industry down – nobody would know if you switched out 50% of the protein in a McNugget [for insect protein]. That’s a mass idea. And it really excites me. Imagine that!” f
For those running truly sustainable restaurants, it’s about so much more than simply what’s on the menu, and they don’t feel the need to shout about it either, says Clare Finney 64
Photograph by 9Cheese Bar) Joel Knight; (Hawksmoor) Piotr Kowalczyks
T STARTED, AS so many things do these days, with a YouTube video: one shot on a phone camera by two marine biologists who were undertaking a routine operation. A sea turtle has something – “A hook worm? A tape worm?” – stuck up its nose and, pliers in one hand, phone in the other, the pair are attempting to wrestle it out. The turtle starts sneezing. It’s adorable and cute, and for a moment you think it’s just going to be all Vets in Practice – but this time with sea creatures! Then the turtle starts bleeding. The blockage proves longer and longer, and what the biologists thought would be a quick and easy worming turns into the extraction a 10cm plastic straw. Yes, a straw. One of those things you casually stick in your G&T or in the top of a Coke bottle because your teeth are a bit sensitive. I’ll spare you the gory details – you might be eating – but suffice to say that by the end of it, the air was blue with the curses of the biologists, and the counter ran red with blood. Within days, the clip had gone viral, sparking much sadness and anger at the reckless way in which the restaurant and bar industry uses and dispose of these small, destructive and – let’s face it – essentially pretty unnecessary pieces of plastic. Yet while many restaurant groups turned a blind eye and carried on sucking, the Hertfordshire-based pub chain Oakman Inns saw it as a call to arms. “Overnight, they decided to ban their use of them,” says Tom Tanner of the Sustainable Restaurant Association: a small but influential player in what is, slowly, becoming an enlightened industry. Oakman wasn’t the only one to pull the plug on plastic straws – The Breakfast Club, Hawksmoor, MEATliquor and others have followed suit – but they were the most cutthroat: immediately cancelling all future orders, and creating a sculpture out of the melted-down remainder of their supply. These days, it’s par for the course for restaurants to make a song and dance about the free-range, organic and homegrown credentials of their food, if they have them. The scandal of the straws is a prime example of the less ‘sexy’ aspects of sustainability going largely unnoticed: not because customers don’t care, but because without furrowing about in the deep end of a restaurant’s website, it is surprisingly difficult to distinguish how sustainable your meal is beyond what you see on the menu and the chalk writing on the wall. Of course, as the very existence of the Sustainable Restaurant Association indicates, there is more to sustainability than sourcing.
Established in 2010, it has an extensive framework that covers issues of society and the environment, as well as produce. Each month the Association focuses on a different aspect, from community engagement to healthy eating, treatment of staff to waste. It’s not as tasty as talking about pole and line caught tuna seared and served on a bed of homegrown cucumber relish, true: but there is a growing sense that to worry about your tuna while pumping out copious carbon dioxide is, to some extent, fiddling while the world burns. “We need to look at the industry as a whole,” reiterates Tanner, citing Wahaca as a prime example of a place whose comprehensive action (which includes smart kitchen equipment, recycled materials, carbon offsetting and recycling) has become a model of sustainability. In March last year, Wahaca was the first restaurant group in the UK to become carbon-neutral. For so-
WE DON’T WANT TO SHOVE OUR SUSTAINABILITY DOWN PEOPLE’S THROATS
called chains, whose eco-credentials have historically been found wanting, Wahaca’s co-founder Mark Selby is considered very much a pioneer. “They are a double act,” Tanner says of Selby and Wahaca’s better-known other half, chef Thomasina Miers. “Thomasina’s the foodie side, whereas Mark is passionate about what happens behind the scenes.” When I catch Selby early one morning in a week choc-full of meetings and site visits, this passion is tangible – more tangible, in fact, than it is in the restaurants themselves. “We have info on our website,” he says, “and there’s a bit on our menus – but there are only so many messages you can send out to people. We don’t want to shove our sustainability down people’s throats.” Wahaca is not Pret, whose posters shout loudly and proudly about the various ways they go about reducing their environmental impact. “It’s a different atmosphere. Customers are not grabbing a sandwich: they come to spend time here, for great food and a great vibe.” The motives behind Wahaca’s methods – the LED lighting, paint that’s low in particulate pollutants, the recycling of heat from the back of the fridges and freezers into heating water – come more from inside the company than outside it. “Principally, we do it because we believe in it. We have always cared about our impact on the planet.” Some customers are very interested; many aren’t, he continues – “but whatever we do at Wahaca, we have to do it with integrity, because we really care.” It is not, therefore, a marketing ploy. Nor is it a money-spinner – though there are energy →
ZERO TOLERANCE: [clockwise from main] The Cheese Bar, Wahaca and Hawksmoor are 100% committed to being sustainable behind the scenes
→ savings to be made through LED lighting and motion sensors on lights and fans. “With each new site we complete a ‘Ska Retail environmental assessment’” – a framework where they identify reusable materials, specify materials with high recycled content, install energy-efficient equipment and water-efficient taps – “and use builders and designers who are trained in environmental quality,” says Selby. It costs more and it’s complicated, “but that is no excuse if you believe in it.” One of my favourite Wahacas, in Soho, is in a former dance studio, and the gleaming wooden strips on the wall are repurposed from the floor. My assumption – one which many readers will share – is that restaurant chains sell out on things like sustainability and wages in the quest for expansion. Selby’s mission is to prove to customers and to his fellow restaurant group owners that this doesn’t have to be the case. Of course, small restaurants are more agile. In a bid to curb his carbon footprint and support British craftsmanship, Mathew Carver sourced cutlery from Sheffield, furniture from Canterbury, and crockery from Stoke-on-Trent for his Cheese Bar in Camden. While the scale of Wahaca’s demand renders such reliance on small-scale suppliers unfeasible, for Carver it was a no brainer: “We source artisanal British cheese. Why not put the same consideration into furniture and tablewear?” At Long Arm Pub, a new boozer and brewery in Shoreditch, they have completely removed the packaging process so beers are fresh from the tanks in the room to the glass. “You don’t find Tank Fresh beer everywhere because the majority of brewers don’t have the scientific knowledge to carry the process
TREATING STAFF FAIRLY IS A KEY PART OF SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS through and scientists don’t have the brewing background,” says creator Guillarmo, third generation brewer and chemical engineer. It’s the ‘booze-on-tap’ concept – an idea popularised by Sourced Market and Vinoteca, and extremely effective at cutting down packaging – taken to the next level: plans are also afoot for an aquaponics farm at Long Arm, whereby the fish are fed with the spent grains from the brewing process. Size matters when it comes to sustainability: Switzerland can recycle as much it likes, but it’s the States we really need on the bandwagon – yet there is a ferment, if you’ll excuse the pun, among the little guys who are coming up with imaginative solutions to waste and inefficiency. Hawksmoor cannot possibly commit to composting all their waste on site – “each restaurant would require an entire floor,” says Emmy van Beek, the group’s sustainability manager. But they are full of admiration for those restaurateurs – Doug McMaster in Brighton, Tom Hunt in Bristol – who are. Ultimately some things need size. Smart technology, and the sort of big pay packets and in-house career progression that encourages staff retention are features only money can buy, and that invariably means restaurant groups. Wahaca and Hawksmoor take pride in their smart fans and fridges, and in the wages and training their employees receive. “We pay vocational wages: on a level of a teacher if you’re a head waiter, on the level of a headmaster if you’re a head chef,” says the co-founder of Hawksmoor, Will Beckett. “From the first hour of the first day of your induction, we’re talking about how you can work your way up – or if you don’t want to work up, about how you can be the
GOING GREEN: [left] Long Arm Pub is bringing sustainability into the drinks industry; [right] Cinnamon Soho’s eco-friendly summer terrace
best waiter or chef de partie.” He’s made it his mission to ensure that his staff stay at Hawksmoor – and if they leave, that they leave loving Hawksmoor. “It’s well known as one of the best places to work in the industry,” comments Tanner, who believes treating – and paying – staff fairly is a key part of being a sustainable business. “Before we opened Hawksmoor, we had the same problems everyone else complains of in the restaurants we started: a high turnover, staff treating their jobs as a stopgap and so on. With this we approached things differently,” Beckett explains. “I actually started as a waitress, at the Guildhall branch seven years ago!” van Beek proudly tells me. “They are our biggest concerns: our food, and our people,” agrees Selby. “We’ve
THE SUSTAINABILITY OF A RESTAURANT BOILS DOWN TO THE PEOPLE INVOLVED three head chefs now who we trained from nothing, who couldn’t speak English. Now each one’s in charge of a multi-million-pound restaurant.” Small independents can’t do that, he points out – yet as the Three Stags in Kennington demonstrates, you don’t have to be big to make a difference. Landlord Richard Bell is no chief executive officer: he’s a yogi who spent almost a year living in Bali, and who, last year, made the news for installing the faces of the Republican presidential candidates in the toilers. Yet within a year of signing up for membership of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, he’d won three stars – their highest rating – for revamping his sourcing, recycling and energy supply. Petersham Nurseries, meanwhile, send their used coffee grains to Biobean, who convert
them to biofuel. “This high-performance winter fuel burns hotter and longer than wood and is proudly stocked in Petersham Nurseries’ Garden Shop,” says executive chef Damien Clisby. “They are sold to our customers and our recycled waste coffee grounds are given a useful second life.” As both Selby and Beckett are at pains to acknowledge, the sustainability of a restaurant largely boils down to the people involved, not their pockets. “It was the bartenders who felt funny about their using plastic straws to taste cocktails: the chefs who wanted to cut down on refined sugars [unrefined sugar can be entirely produced where it’s grown, meaning the value remains in the country of origin, with the communities that grow it, not a refinery],”
says Beckett. It’s the last person to leave who, at the end of the evening, must remember to switch off all the electrics. There are ways to make sustainability easier for staff: van Beek introduces me to a last man out switch which turns off everything: “lights, computers, equipment – everything that doesn’t need to be on, like the booking server” she says. “When you’re leaving at 2am after a long shift the last thing you want to do is have to go round checking that the lights are off.” Clearly labelling different recycling boxes (Wahaca has seven) and teaching kitchen staff how to minimize food waste gives meaning to the mantra ‘every little helps.’ These practices aren’t going to make the papers. No one will Instagram your compost bin. “There are those who will put what they →
GAMECHANGERS: Silo in Brighton was conceived as the UK’s first fully zero-waste eatery, from the ingredients it uses to the way it’s been designed
the press release. “Re-using or upcycling an ingredient, or showcasing a nose-to-tail approach to processing something, opens up creativity and gives a delicious example of how we don’t need to simply focus on ‘prime cuts’. However, it’s even better to go beyond this, and look at all the materials possible to reduce our impact while still having something wonderful,” Mr Lyan tells me. The place is utterly charming: a stretch of turf scattered with mismatching furniture, it’s vintage style is so on trend, I forget it’s about more than aesthetics. “Did you know this was an eco terrace?” I say to my companion. “Ah,” he replies. “I wondered what the ‘Watermelon Rind Tonic’ was about.” We order two. Of course, they arrive in milk bottles, but beyond that there’s nothing odd about them. They taste – well, simply lovely. “You wouldn’t know,” we remarked to each other, as we admired the coffee-jarsturned-flower-vases and repurposed bicycle wheels, and ordered a collins created with cordial made from discarded mint stems. Compared with the sought-after Michelin star, one from the Sustainable Restaurant Association is unlikely ever to hold much cache – but you shouldn’t have to shout about sustainability. It shouldn’t have to be different or difficult. It’s just what you do – or should do, in an ideal world – and proving that is
THE VERY NATURE OF SUSTAINABILITY IS THAT IT IS BACKSTAGE what the finer parts of the food industry do best. I’m glad Wahaca sends its biological waste to an anaerobic digester for energy. I’m thrilled the Cinnamon restaurants are using filtered still and sparkling water systems to avoid using plastic bottles. But I’m also glad I didn’t know about it: that it’s possible to eat at these restaurants without knowing that, and find them enjoyable. Because, ultimately, the more normal, easy and palatable that sustainability looks and feels on the outside, the more people are likely to adopt it themsevles – and the fewer bleeding, plastic-ridden sea creatures will end up suffering needlessly for our mass consumerism. f
Photograph by XDBPhotography
→ do on their menus, I guess because it adds perceived value,” says Carver – “but the reason I wanted to buy British furniture and crockery was for my own peace of mind.” Even if customers care about the planet (and one hopes they do), they don’t necessarily want to be force-fed all the various ways that a restaurant is being sustainable. “A lot of people when they go out to eat like to know these things are being taken care of. They don’t necessarily want to tuck into sustainability measures with a knife and fork,” says Tanner. There are ways to subtly indicate to customers that you’re sustainable: straws are one, as is offering a doggy bag, having wines on tap and avoiding plastic bottles – but the very nature of sustainability is that it is backstage. Perhaps that is a good thing. Last night I visited Cinnamon Soho’s summer festival terrace, the brainchild of Vivek Singh and celebrated bartender Ryan Chetiyawardana, also known as Mr Lyan. “The sustainable al fresco terrace will feature a range of Mr Lyan ‘Upcycled & Recycled’ cocktails alongside a selection of Vivek’s signature street food that will be served in recycled dishes to ensure that nothing goes to waste” proclaimed
Our gluten-free food is delicious for a reason. At ‘Too Good To Be...’ every product is expertly made to contain the most important ingredient: flavour. This is our passion, which means everything that leaves our bakery has passed the ‘Too Good To Be…’ Taste Test. Full on flavour, it’s a promise we’re proud to deliver.
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What happens when a superstar chef takes on social inequality? Lydia Winter finds out from Massimo Bottura
HAD ‘NO MORE excuses’ tattooed on my right arm when I was in Rio de Janeiro, because I needed it,” says Massimo Bottura. You wouldn’t think one of the world’s most successful chefs – with three Michelin stars and a restaurant that’s been voted one of the five best in the world for the past five years – would need such a strong reminder to put their mind to anything. But, when it comes to fighting food waste, Bottura believes you can’t be reminded enough. When he speaks about his Food For Soul project, he spills over with passion – talking at mile-a-minute pace; hopping from one theme to another; barely breaking for pause. The non-profit organisation came into being after he ran an initial pop-up ‘refettorio’ during Milan’s Expo 2015, where food waste was used to create nutritious meals for those
WE DON’T NEED MORE PRODUCTION, WE NEED TO WASTE LESS. SO HOW DO WE DO THAT?
in need. The pop-up went on to become permanent, setting up in Milan’s Greco quarter, and was so successful that the mayor of Rio de Janeiro enlisted Bottura to do the same thing in Brazil ahead of the Olympics. There are now refettorios in Bologna, Milan and London, where it’s found a home in Kensington – which, despite its reputation for wealth, is home to some of the most deprived pockets in the UK, as the fallout from the Grenfell Tower fire has highlighted. More than 50 well-known British chefs joined Bottura for the launch, and the kitchen is now run by a team of volunteers that work with food waste charity The Felix Project. The organisation collects surplus food from supermarkets, wholesalers and other food suppliers and then delivers that produce to charities across London that provide meals for the elderly, the homeless, refugees, and
those with mental health problems As you might expect given its provenance, Food For Soul has been hugely successful, saving more than 25 tonnes of surplus food from going to waste so far – and with more refettorios in the pipeline, it’s well on its way to doing more. Here, Bottura tells us why London was the right place to set up a soup kitchen, why this project is about more than food, and why making a difference actually matters.
What was the inspiration behind setting up Food for Soul?
Photograph by [Bottura] Simon John Owen
It started [with a pop-up] during the first Expo in Milan in 2015, and the theme was ‘Feeding The Planet, Energy For Life’. I looked at the statistics – despite world hunger, 33% of the world’s food production is wasted every year. It seemed obvious to me: we don’t need more production, we don’t need more food. We need to waste less, and how can we do that? I wanted to show the world that the things they think are waste are really just ordinary ingredients. If, with ordinary ingredients like that, we can show the world that we can create amazing recipes, that’s what really makes the difference. Who [is in the right position to] give the world that example? The best, most influential chef in the world. The organisers of the event trusted me because they know I’m crazy about quality, and that I have a lot of respect from other chefs and my colleagues, and everyone [I asked to help] said yes. All the phone calls were over after 45 minutes – they all said yes straight away. The minister of agriculture in Italy said the Refettorio was the most significant project at the Expo. Food For Soul came about after we had just closed the Milan Refettorio pop-up. At 6am, I had a WhatsApp from the mayor of Rio and from David Hertz of [Brazilian social gastronomy initiative] Gastromotiva, saying they wanted to do a project, too. And I thought, why not? Lara, my wife, said, “What are you doing? Are you crazy?” I said, “No, Lara. I think it’s a great opportunity.” At a time when the mayor of Rio was closing soup kitchens, we opened a soup kitchen. You build walls and we’ll break them.
and enthusiastic way, it was unbelievable. I didn’t choose the place in Kensington – it chose me. We were exploring the area and we went to visit The Felix Project, an amazing charity in London that rescues food that would otherwise disappear. I saw the building and said, “This is it.” I had that vision.
How does the project choose who is invited in to eat? In London, it’s St Cuthbert’s [a West Londonbased community centre]. They run it day-today and they select the people because they have a lot of requests. In Milan, there was Caritas, the Catholic church organisation. In Rio de Janeiro it was the Gastromotiva guys with a few local communities. Who eats there depends on the place. In Milan, at that time, it was 50% of homeless and 50% refugees because we have a lot of people there. In Rio it was the people who live on the street. There are 2.5 million people who live on the street there, so it was strange and difficult. In London, it’s mostly homeless people who live in the park. In Bologna, it’s →
LONDON IS AT A KEY MOMENT. I KNEW PEOPLE HERE WOULD UNDERSTAND THIS PROJECT WASTE NOT WANT NOT: (clockwise from left) Bottura during the launch; plating up; using surplus veg; the Refettorio Gastromotiva
Why did you bring the Refettorio project to London? London is at a key moment with Brexit and it’s the perfect place to do it because of the culture here – you can understand my project very well, and it was easy to do here. Easier than Milan and Rio. British chefs responded in such a deep
→ all families. But the most shocking one was Modena, my hometown. Some of the guests were people I’ve known for 30 years, people who live in downtown Modena and don’t have anything to eat because of the economic crisis or the family splitting up. Why is it important for you to make the space aspirational and include art and design elements?
THE HAS BINS: (clockwise from main)A volunteer carrying a box of veg sourced through food waste charity The Felix Project; Michel Roux Jr cooks his French-influenced dishes as part of the launch of Refettorio Felix; chef Anna Hansen
How many people have been fed at Refettorio Felix so far? Has it made a genuine difference in the community? Every day, between up to 90 people are fed there. But it’s not just about meal times. There’s an area where you can use the computer and connect to the internet. At 10am, there’s tea. The local community is so happy. It’s one of the key points of all of our projects. In the beginning they don’t get it. They think just migrants or refugees or poor people are coming and they’re going to create problems. In Milan, the Refettorio is such a beautiful project, with the architecture, the art and outside there’s an amazing door by Mimmo Paladino. There’s beautiful neon writing that I also have a tattoo of on my right arm – ‘no more excuses’ – which I had done in Rio. But the whole neighbourhood and community of the Greco [one of the poorest areas of the city, and where the first Refettorio is based] has changed. They are building new bars and restaurants. It’s crazy, but it’s actually happening. And the whole community is involved, just like in London. There are so many volunteers. There are so many people who want to help out. It’s incredible. At the end of the day, this isn’t a charity project, it’s an inclusive, cultural project with a focus on fighting food waste – and the more we talk about it, the better. f foodforsoul.it; refettoriofelix.com
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Photograph by [Anna Hansen] Jonathan Stewart; [Michel Roux] Photograph Jonathan by Stewart ###
It’s such an amazing space. We didn’t need to put a lot of art in because we had these incredible gothic-style windows that are already pieces of art themselves, but we do have some beautiful neon handwriting. The art, design and architecture are as key to the project as the best chefs. People don’t live from just bread alone, they live for something much deeper, so that’s why I really care about this. For example, when we opened in London, there was a 92-yearold lady who asked for a microphone. She was so emotional and moved by what was happening that she talked with everybody, telling them, “I’m 92 years old and this is the first time in my life that I feel a sense of community. I just want to say thank you, I can die very happy and I can spend the last years of my life close with the people I know in an amazing space.” This is exactly the reason we
wanted to create such a beautiful setting.
Refettorio Felix launched during the first London Food Month this July, with more than 50 leading British and international chefs joining Massimo Bottura to cook in the stunning space in Kensington. All of the ingredients were products that would have otherwise gone to waste that had been sourced from supermarkets and other local businesses by The Felix Project. The line up read like a who’s-who of London’s dining scene – just a few of the names were Murano and Café Murano’s Angela Hartnett; The Modern Pantry’s Anna Hansen; Bibendum’s Claude Bosi; Lyle’s James Lowe; Le Gavroche’s Michel Roux Jr; and more, all of whom stepped up to the plate to cook for the vulnerable and in need. Day-to-day, the refettorio is now run by volunteers from St Cuthbert’s Day Centre, and it’s always on the look out for more hands. Fancy pitching in? St Cuthbert’s needs people to help with the daily lunch service; setting up, serving food and clearing plates. Just head to the website to find out how you can get involved and make a difference. For more information on the project, and to find out how you can become a volunteer, visit refettoriofelix.com
WANT NOT WASTE NOT In a world full of waste, Lydia Winter and Tom Powell look at pioneers in food, fashion and coffee conjuring magic with discards and byproducts
HROUGHOUT THE FOOD production process, roughly a third of all produce goes to waste – whether it’s wonky-looking veg unfit for supermarket shelves, excess animal hides from meat processing or a byproduct deemed surplus to requirements at some point between harvest and plate. But it doesn’t have to be this way – with a little ingenuity it’s possible to make something perfectly palatable (and sometimes even wearable) with produce that would otherwise end up in landfill. Here are just a few of the people doing just that... →
Photograph by ###
FLOUR POWER: Made from dried, milled coffee cherries, coffee flour is gluten-free and makes use of an otherwise wasted byproduct of farming
FABRIC MADE FROM ORANGE PEEL RETAINS VITAMIN C THAT’LL NOURISH YOUR SKIN → Meat byproducts
Photograph by [Quince] Miles Willis
While veg-forward eating is widely being touted as a possible answer to sustainability issues, there’s no getting around the fact that meat still forms a large part of the British diet. That makes it even more imperative for us to ensure we get the most out of everything we’re eating, from nose-to-tail cooking to getting creative with byproducts. Luxury brand Billy Tannery agrees. Using kid goat leather that would previously have been thrown away, it creates butter-soft, vegetable-tanned goods including stamped card holders, chic journals, a tote (called the Gote, obvs) and a rolltop backpack. Even better, the hides come from Cabrito, a company already helping to battle wastage by creating a market for meat from the males (billies) born to dairy goats, which would otherwise be killed at birth. Ellie’s Dairy, too, has the hides of its dairy goats saved and turned into everything from rugs and throws to dog blankets and wheelchair seats that you can buy from its stall in Borough Market. Sustainable style? You goat this. (Sorry not sorry). Elsewhere, Woolcool uses sheep’s wool to create a natural insulation material that you might be familiar with from Abel & Cole’s veg and meat boxes, among other delivery services. It turns out that wool keeps food below that all-important 5°C for at least 24 hours – which puts it streets ahead of polystyrene. It also serves as padding, and can be reused again and again. We’ve even started using ours in our picnic basket.
Plant fibres Whether we decide to cut the tops off things like leeks and carrots when they can still be eaten, or don’t use an item of fruit or veg because it’s deemed ‘wonky’, a hell of a lot of food is ending up in the bin rather than on our plates. That’s why a handful of enterprising people are discovering ways to put these wasted materials to good use. First up is Dr Carmen Hijosa, founder of Ananas Anam, who has found a way to create a fabric out of the pineapple leaves that are removed from the plant when it’s harvested. Pinatex, the resultant product, is a strong, breathable, leather-like material that can be used for everything from handbags to car seats. And, if you wanted proof it’s really cool, Puma loved the fabric enough to use it to create an entire range of its iconic sneakers. And that’s not the only company getting fruity with fashion. Orange Fiber is using the 700,000 tonnes of peel that’s discarded during Sicily’s citrus harvest each year to spin a soft and shiny material that’s not too dissimilar to silk – and it’s even good for you, as it retains vitamin C that’ll nourish your skin. Luxury fashion house Salvatore Ferragamo is the first to jump on board this particularly gravy (or should we say juice?) train with a collection made exclusively with the sustainable fabric. If fashion isn’t your forté, PaperWise is manufacturing paper – from office supplies to disposable street-food containers – that’s made entirely out of agricultural waste that would otherwise be burnt. The benefits here are four for the price of one: waste is put to good use; less land is needed; you get both
food and paper from one plant; and fewer trees end up being cut down, which means they can thrive – absorbing CO2, creating oxygen and maintaining biodiversity. That’s our kind of multitasking.
Fruit and vegetable waste As much as 40% of a crop of vegetables can end up getting chucked away because is isn’t quite pretty enough for supermarkets, but with a little searching, you can still find sustainable grub on shop shelves without specifically seeking out a wonky veg box. A great example is sauce-making pioneer Rubies in the Rubble, which has saved more than 85,000 pieces of fruit and veg from landfill by turning less-than-gorgeous veg into jars of tasty chutney, piccalilli and relish. As well as using plenty of surplus cucumbers, onions and tomatoes in its range of sauces, →
TOP UP YOUR TAN: [from above] Billy Tannery using kid goat leather that would usually be thrown away; Fruit Magpie’s quince cheese
BEST FRUIT FORWARD: Ananas Anam makes handbags from pineapple leaves; Optiat’s caffeine-rich range of coffee scrubs; Dash Water HQ
Coffee As a nation we drink about 55 million cups of coffee every single day, which means we’re sending tonnes of steaming grounds straight to landfill, too. And although many cafés are fighting back by handing out free bags of nitrogen-rich used coffee for punters to use
Photograph by [Coffee scrub] Adam Duke
→ the company uses overripe fruit for other curious condiments like banana ketchup and blueberry barbecue sauce. In much the same way, Dash Water infuses pure British spring water with wonky cucumbers and lemons to make its refreshingly sustainable, sugar-free drinks. Around London, meanwhile, Fruit Magpie scours urban gardens and allotments for in-season fruit, turning it into fruit cheese – a firm, sliceable preserve that goes well with cheese (duh) but also works as a barbecue glaze. Similarly, The Urban Cordial concocts a huge range of core and seasonal drinks from farm surplus. They might not be as quite as pretty as your average cordials, but we always learned it’s what’s inside that counts.
COFFEE FLOUR PACKS MORE PROTEIN THAN FRESH KALE
as garden compost, such measures just aren’t having enough of an impact. Enter Optiat, a cosmetics company that has started hand-sourcing excess arabica from London’s finest cafés, bars and restaurants, combining their antioxidant, exfoliating powers with great smelling essential oils like lemongrass, mint and mandarin to turn them into body scrubs. Handily, coffee has the same acidity level as your skin and the caffeine helps increase bloodflow, which means Optiat’s products provide great relief for cellulite and skin conditions like eczema and acne. Clothes manufacturer Sundried, meanwhile, uses grounds to make activewear that’s fast-drying, wicking and deodorising. All you need to make the yarn is lowlevel heat and a hell of a lot of pressure, which means less CO2 emissions in the manufacturing process, too. The biggest win, however, is that you won’t come back from the gym smelling like an overworked barista. But it goes way further than just using the byproducts of your morning pick-meup, because coffee farming wastes coffee cherries by the ton, too. Although the flesh that surrounds each harvested bean is sometimes used to make a fruity tea called cascara in coffee-growing countries like Colombia and Bolivia, the drink’s popularity hasn’t caught on enough worldwide to make it a legitimate approach to battling waste. That’s why CRU Kafe has started drying and milling coffee cherries to create a flavourrich, gluten-free coffee flour that’s higher in protein than fresh kale, packed with antioxidants and more fibrous than wholegrain wheat flour. Not bad at all. f
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Enjoy delicious seasonal British dishes for lunch and dinner, cocktails on the terrace and live jazz every Tuesday. t 0207 368 3993 e firstname.lastname@example.org www.roofgardens.virgin.com @Babylon_London
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THINKING DRINKING At Matt Whiley’s Scout, Mike Gibson finds a drinks list that’s about more than just what you can taste
This cocktail serves as a great summary of Scout’s methodology – based around an ingredient that’s bang in season at the time of writing, with ingredients foraged from Essex.
INGREDIENTS ◆◆ 3.75ml Scout aquavit
◆◆ 12.5ml Grey Goose vodka
◆◆ 20ml sorrel-distilled Grey Goose ◆◆ 3.75ml mezcal
◆◆ 30ml pea cordial ◆◆ 5ml sugar syrup ◆◆ 5ml egg white
Shake and double-strain into a Nick and Nora glass. Garnish with a pea pod with compressed apple balls.
Photograph by ###
F MATT WHILEY’S previous ventures – the co-founded Worship Street Whistling Shop and Purl, as well as his own Peg + Patriot at the Town Hall Hotel in Bethnal Green – hint at a predilection towards pushing boundaries, his most recent opening Scout, on Great Eastern Street, nails it to the mast. Along with a handful of other London bar luminaries including Tony Conigliaro and Ryan ‘Mr Lyan’ Chetiyawardana, Whiley is leading the charge for bartenders who want to go beyond simply mixing drinks, and turn the cocktail bar into a multi-faceted, resonant experience. Even upon ordering a drink in this compact bar, that much is evident. First of all, no alcohol is listed on the menu. That doesn’t mean the drinks aren’t boozy; just that Whiley would rather you ordered according to what flavours take your fancy, not which spirit you think you like. And the drinks aren’t crowd-pleasing – it’s clear Whiley wants to make you think about what they represent, rather than just how they taste. A strong anti-waste sentiment pervades the menu, and everything is sourced from the British Isles, which means no lemon peel, no orange wedges; garnishes are more like the dehydrated waste coffee grounds and salt that adorn the glass of the ‘Beetroot’, an earthy drink we’re later told is made with Patron Café, a bit of tequila, burnt apple and a beetroot caramel. ‘Wheatgrass’ has a celery-like zing, with wheatgrass-infused grain spirit and burnt pear distillate. The most accessible cocktail here is the ‘Fig Leaf’, an old-fashioned-style drink that arrives in a tumbler glass with a huge monolith of ice stamped with the bar’s logo. In terms of design, the room is Scandislick – clean lines, new-school, minimal aesthetic, crisp, thin-lipped glassware, and small square tables lit in movie-star spotlight, with not so much a bar as a central station around which ingredients and glassware are housed on wrap-around shelves. And below ground, there’s a drinks laboratory with a private table for drinkers who really want to dive in to the philosophy, and there’s a food menu, too, which aims to close any loop left open with the ingredients used in the drinks. All of this points to the fact that Scout isn’t necessarily an everyday drinking destination. But the philosophy here means a visit will stay with you far longer than an evening. f scout.bar
t h e w h i s k y e xc h a n g e | h a rv e y n i c h o l s | h e d o n i s m | s e l f r i d g e s
t h e w h i s k y e xc h a n g e
s p i r i t o f t he y e a r 2 017 garden tiger dry gin
b r e at h ta k i n g ly c o m p l e x g i n a n d e au x d e v i e
This twisted old fashioned cocktail is made with fig leaf-infused bourbon, vodka and gorse flower syrup, and bound together by vetiver oil, more commonly used in perfumes. The foraged ingredients come from right on the doorstep in Shoreditch.
ING REDIENTS ◆◆ 20ml fig leaf-distilled Grey Goose ◆◆ 20ml fig leaf-infused Woodford
◆◆ 20ml Woodford Reserve
◆◆ 7.5ml fermented gorse flower syrup ◆◆ 2.5ml sugar syrup
◆◆ 0.1 drop vetiver tincture
Photograph by ###
Stir over ice and serve in a large rocks glass. Serve with a Scoutbranded ice cube and garnish with a fig leaf circle and a viola flower.
RASPBERRY AND SORREL FERMENT
Glass of rosé? It might look like it, but this aperitif is one of Scout’s house-made ferments, made with raspberries and sorrel sourced locally. It’s a perfect way to start an evening at the bar.
IN G R ED IEN TS ◆◆ Raspberries ◆◆ Sorrel leaves
Ferment raspberries and sorrel leaves for five days. Remove the sorrel leaves and ferment for a further ten days, then put through a centrifuge to remove sediment. Pour into a bottle and chill.
Photograph by ###
Rory Harker, co-founder of luxury goat leather brand Billy Tannery, and Diplomat of a New Era 2017
2017â€™s Diplomats of a New Era are three passionate creatives, each of whom share Diplomaticoâ€™s values. Follow their stories and be inspired...
— SOUTHERN COMFORT —
THE SPIRIT OF NEW ORLEANS A FOODISM GUIDE
From its origins in New Orleans to innovative serves in top London bars, Southern Comfort has a wealth of stories to tell…
WHAT'S INSIDE ◆◆ The story of Southern Comfort
◆◆ Past Masters: the parallel histories of
New Orleans and Southern Comfort
◆◆ Six essential serves
◆◆ Where to drink Nola-style in London,
plus a delicious Southern Comfort recipe
S OU TH ER N
CO M FO RT
THE BIRTH OF A SOUTHERN LEGEND Photograph by [saxophone] Michael Hartmann/getty; [whiskey] Miles Willis
From humble beginnings in a New Orleans bar, Southern Comfort has conquered the world. This is the story of the trailblazing entrepreneur who started it all
AN YOU KEEP a secret? Or, to put it another way, could you keep a secret for more than 140 years? Because that's how long the recipe for Southern Comfort has been kept from all but a few people since its creation in New Orleans by Martin Wilkes ('MW') Heron. At its core, of course, is whiskey, but the origins of those distinctive notes of caramel, spice and fruit are a mystery to most. But then the physical ingredients are only part of the story when it comes to this icon of the US South. This is a product whose history is intertwined with that of the city of its birth, and which bears the unmistakable imprint of the spirit of The Big Easy.
The Southern Comfort story begins in 1870s New Orleans, where bars and whiskey were plentiful, but the whiskey was often in poor condition by the time it arrived on boats down the Mississippi and Ohio rivers. MW Heron, then living in New Orleans, came up with an ingenious solution to the problem – and one that would make his fortune. He blended the whiskey with the spices and fruits that arrived at the city's port to create a liqueur. Originally named Cuffs and Buttons, the concoction wasn't just popular in New Orleans – though it was certainly that – its renown soon stretched throughout the US and beyond.
In 1890, Heron's drink, now called Southern Comfort, won a gold medal at the World Exposition in Paris, taking the name and unmistakable flavour to an entirely new continent with considerable success. Heron – an early pioneer in the art of blending – never looked back, and more than 125 years on from the World Exposition his enduring creation is beloved by drinkers and bartenders the world over. Wherever Southern Comfort has travelled, though, it's always brought the New Orleans spirit along for the ride. As they say in the city: laissez les bon temps rouleur. Let the good times roll. ●
S O U T H ER N
C O M FO RT
EASY DOES IT The city of New Orleans isn't known as The Big Easy for nothing. But make no mistake, this is a city that parties hard
Katrina in 2005 to rise up stronger and bolder than ever before. From its French origins, via Spanish and US rule – and from bars, coffee houses and saloons, via prohibition speakeasies, brothels and jazz joints – this is a city with a spirit all of its own. No product captures that spirit like Southern Comfort – a drink born in and shaped by the inimitable New Orleans. We'll drink to that. ●
Photographs by (main) John Coletti/getty; (Louisiana purchase)
raucous celebrations of Mardi Gras – the so-called 'greatest free show on earth – to an epic bar scene where the city's past and present collide to dizzying effect. After all, this is the city that gave birth to that ultimate good-time US drink, Southern Comfort, and the cocktail that changed drinking history, the Sazerac. More than that, it's the city that gave the world jazz, and that recovered from the devastation of Hurricane
Stringer/getty; (prohibition) Buyenlarge/getty; (sazerac) Ken Kwok/getty
OST CITIES ARE lucky to get one nickname. Depending on who you ask, New Orleans has as many as 20 – but none as famous as The Big Easy. Though most attribute that name to its inhabitants' easygoing outlook, some think it comes from the proliferation of speakeasy bars that sprung up during the Prohibition era of the 1920s and '30s. Either way, this is a city that knows how to let the good times roll, from the
PA R A L L E L
1806 Ice is first introduced throughout the US on a large scale, which makes drinking cold drinks in hotter parts of the country (such as in New Orleans) possible. Crucially, it also helps pave the way for the growth of the cocktail – the first mention of which appeared in print in The Balance and Columbian Repository of Hudson, New York. New Orleans is often referred to as the birthplace of the cocktail, though these claims have never been substantiated – the city's role in global drinking culture are undisputed, however.
1850 Saloons veiled as coffee houses are plentiful throughout New Orleans’ French Quarter, the most famous being Sewell Taylor’s Sazerac Coffeehouse, which features an early version of the Sazerac cocktail made with Sazerac cognac and Antoine Peychaud's bitters. In the 1870s, rye whiskey replaces cognac as New Orleans becomes more American and cognac stocks are hit by the effects of the grape pest phylloxera. In 1850, a man called Martin Wilkes Heron is born in St Louis.
Photograph by ###
On 17 January 1920 – three months before the passing of Southern Comfort founder Martin Wilkes Heron – the 18th amendment is passed, which establishes the prohibition of alcoholic beverages in the US. New Orleans drinkers have to get their alcohol fix in secretive speakeasy bars.
French settlers found New Orleans and it later becomes capital of the French colony of Louisiana. In 1762, France gives Louisiana to Spain, which holds the colony until secretly giving it back to France in 1803. Napoleon sells the vast Louisiana territory to the United States for $15m that same year.
1830s and '40s In the early 1830s, a New Orleansbased apothecary called Antoine Peychaud creates his own formula of medicinal herbal bitters. These, added to cognac from France, form the basis of the iconic cocktail that will eventually become known as the Sazerac.
1874 Martin Wilkes Heron, now living in New Orleans, creates the recipe for a drink made with some of the city's favourite imports: whiskey, fruit and spices. Heron's concoction – initially called Cuffs and Buttons – soon becomes known as Southern Comfort, and rapidly grows in popularity. The liqueur's renown begins to stretch throughout the US and beyond.
2007 Ann Tueneran, founder of spirits events series Tales of the Cocktail, successfully lobbies for the Sazerac to be named the official cocktail of New Orleans. Though initially denied, the bill is passed by the senate in 2008.
S O U T H ER N
C O M FO RT
MANY INTO ONE Southern Comfort shines on its own, but in a cocktail its star burns even brighter. Here are six showstoppers
◆◆ 50ml Southern Comfort ◆◆ 1 dash cucumber Bitters ◆◆ 2 slices cucumber ◆◆ 150ml Fever-Tree Sicilian Lemonade
Add all ingredients to a tall glass and stir to mix. Garnish with a slice of cucumber.
Southern Showdown 2016 (Winner) THE GAMBIT, CHRISTIAN TIREL
◆◆ 2 squeezed lemon wedges
SOUTHERN COMFORT BRAND AMBASSADOR
◆◆ 150ml Lipton Peach Iced Tea
◆◆ 3 dashes Regans' Orange Bitters
Add all ingredients to a tall glass with ice and stir to mix. Garnish with a slice of lemon.
◆◆ 40ml Southern Comfort 100
THE AWARDWINNING GAMBIT COMES SERVED WITH AN EDIBLE PLAYING CARD
◆◆ 20ml Peychaud Aperitivo ◆◆ absinthe flambé Stir all ingredients in a mixing glass or tin, strain over cubed ice into an old fashioned glass, flambéd with absinthe. Serve with an edible playing card.
Southern Showdown 2017 (Winner) OFF THE CUFF, NICOLE SYKES THE VOYAGE OF BUCK, EDINBURGH
◆◆ 40ml Southern Comfort ◆◆ 20ml Sazerac Rye ◆◆ 5ml Branca Menta ◆◆ 3 dashes Peychaud's bitters ◆◆ Ardbeg rinse
Photographs by (Voodoo) Katrina Barber; (TotC) Gabi Porter;
SOUTH COUNTRY ICED TEA
◆◆ 50ml Southern Comfort
(Satchmo) Zack Smith Photography; (Gambit and Ice Tea) Miles Willis
HE PIONEERING FOUNDER of Southern Comfort, MW Heron, combined whiskey with local ingredients, and in doing so created a versatile, mixable liquid that would become a bartender's best friend. These cocktails – including two signature serves and four of the best entries from the annual Southern Showdown competition – are a tribute to his innovation and influence, and a genuine taste of New Orleans spirit.
Stir over block ice, garnish with a lemon twist and serve in an old fashioned glass.
CAL E NDAR
(Runners-Up) FLEUR DE LIS, DAVID LANGLEY LAST CHANCE SALOON, NOTTINGHAM
◆◆ 50ml Southern Comfort ◆◆ 10ml lemon juice ◆◆ 25ml pink grapefruit juice ◆◆ 7.5ml Orgeat Garnish with a diluted orange flower water rinse and serve in a coupette. 813 BIENVILLE, ASHTON WILLIAMSON BLIND PIG, LONDON
◆◆ 45ml Southern Comfort ◆◆ 25ml sweet vermouth ◆◆ 5ml Yellow Chartreuse ◆◆ 2 Peychaud's Bitters Stir down over ice and garnish with Islay whisky. Serve in a coupette. ●
The Big Easy knows how to party, with a packed events calendar all year round. Here are some of the best VOODOO EXPERIENCE (27-29 OCT 2017) This music, arts and food festival has very little to do with voodoo, but what it lacks in spiritual religion it makes up for with big name acts including Kendrick Lamar, Foo Fighters and The Killers.
MARDI GRAS (13 FEB 2018)
CLOCKWISE FROM MAIN: On the rocks; The Gambit; South Country Iced Tea; a bartender at work with Southern Comfort
The rowdiest and most raucous carnival in the US is like nothing else on earth. With festivities taking place for weeks running up to 'Fat Tuesday', it's an eye-opening, unmissable way to experience the spirit of New Orleans.
TALES OF THE COCKTAIL (JUL 2018) This week-long series of seminars, networking events and tastings has evolved into one of the world's most important cocktail festivals. It's must-visit for bartenders and cocktail lovers.
SATCHMO SUMMER FEST (3-8 AUG 2018) Named for New Orleans-born Louis 'Satchmo' Armstrong, this celebration of the city's jazz culture is as dazzling and informative as you'd expect from the place that spawned the genre. Expect great food and drink, too.
ICE BAR, MAYFAIR: The only permanent ice bar in London, made from Swedish river water. The room might be a bit frosty here but the drinks are hot. DRINK THIS: Walk in the Park
BODEANS, SOHO: London's original smokehouse offers a taste of Southern US cooking right in the heart of London. Expect big flavours and big-hitting drinks. DRINK THIS: Alabama Slamma
PLAQUEMINE LOCK, ANGEL: A pub on the canal in Islington that serves authentic cajun and creole food and drink? You'll believe it when you see it (and taste it). DRINK THIS: Louisiana Jam
S O U T H ER N
C O M FO RT
SIPPIN' PRETTY You don't even have to leave London to get your fix of Southern-style eating and drinking. Here's where to hit up
FANCY FUNKIN CHICKEN, BRIXTON: Funked up, locally sourced Sourthern-fried birds and innovative cocktails. DRINK THIS: Earlâ€™s Ice Tea fancyfunkinchicken.com
Photograph by (Bodeans) Chris Orange; (Plaquemine) Howard Sooley
QUAGLINO'S, ST JAMES'S: Art deco speakeasy with era-led cocktails and an old-school vibe. DRINK THIS: Southern Quaglino Fizz
P E RF E CT
PA RT N E RS
You can drink it straight, mix it in a cocktail, or even use Southern Comfort in a recipe
BALTHAZAR, COVENT GARDEN: Classic French bistro with a US twist, and cocktails from the legendary Brian Silva. DRINK THIS: Southern Comfort Manhattan Balthazarlondon.Com
Southern Comfort Original is available from all good bars and retailers nationwide and on amazon.co.uk. Follow @SouthernComfortUK on Facebook and Instagram to keep up to date with the latest news, events and competitions.
SOUTHERN COMFORT SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE Try this delicious sauce with ice cream, drizzled over Greek yoghurt, or spooned over a slice of cheescake…
INGREDIENTS ◆◆ 200g granulated sugar
◆◆ 90g salted butter at room
temperature, cut into 6 pieces
◆◆ 120ml double cream ◆◆ 1 tsp salt
◆◆ 1 good measure Southern
BERMONDSEY YARD CAFÉ: Great music, great drinks, and one of the best outside areas in the Big Easy… sorry, the Big Smoke DRINK THIS: South Country Iced Tea
BOISDALE, CANARY WHARF: A decadent venue with an even more decadent whiskey selection, tucked away behind a 12m-long bar. DRINK THIS: Southern Comfort and Oysters boisdale.co.uk
STILLWATER, BALHAM: New kid on the block with more experience than you can shake a cocktail-shaker shaped stick at. DRINK THIS: Southern Comfort 100 facebook.com/ stillwaterbar
Comfort (add more to taste)
1. Heat the sugar in a medium saucepan over a medium heat, stirring constantly with a spatula or wooden spoon. The sugar will form clumps and eventually melt into a thick, amber-coloured liquid as you continue to stir. Be careful not to burn it. 2. Once the sugar is completely melted, immediately add the butter (be careful – the caramel will bubble rapidly). Stir until the butter is completely melted (2-3 mins). A whisk helps if you find the butter is separating from the sugar. 3. Very slowly, drizzle in the cream while stirring. Since the cream is colder than the caramel, the mixture will bubble rapidly. 4. Allow the mixture to boil for 1 minute. It will rise in the pan as it boils. Add the Southern Comfort and stir for 1 minute. 5. Remove from the heat and stir in the salt. Allow to cool down before drizzling all over your favourite dessert. Well covered, the caramel will keep for up to two weeks in the fridge, or a day at room temperature. Warm before using.
SHAKE THINGS UP Grab a bag of crisps and raise a glass to adventurous snack matching: Burts Chips is leading the way in the savoury crisp cocktail trend, and you can get involved too
RISPS AND A pint is a tried and tested snacking occasion in the UK, but Burts Chips is encouraging Brits to think outside the crisp packet and enhance their snacking with the latest trend: savoury crisp cocktails. The artisan hand-cooked crisp company has created six ‘Burtender’ crisp cocktail recipes available on its website and across social media for fans to try out. You’ll never look at a humble packet of crisps in the same way again. Experts in adventurous snacking, Burts Chips know that a good cocktail is the same as a good snack – it has to have the right balance of ingredients and textures to be satisfying. Burts has teamed up with an expert mixologist, who selectively combined great cocktail ingredients with Burts’ distinct handcooked crisp flavours to ensure each cocktail carries its signature big bold taste, and that there was a drink for all palates, preferences and spirits. From the joining of two classics with Burts’ Vintage Cheddar and Spring Onion Martini, to a Margarita sprinkled with Burts’ Sea Salt & Crushed
Peppercorns crisps atop a sea salt foam, and Burts’ Smoked Crispy Bacon Manhattan, there is something to inspire everyone. For the first time, the crisps aren’t just the wingman to your favourite drink – these adventurous cocktails put crisps centre stage, where they belong. Dedicated crisp lovers should visit burtschips.com for the full recipes and
for more information on where to buy Burts Chips nationwide. Also, be sure to keep an eye on Burts Chips’ social media channels for tantalising images of the crisp cocktails and an upcoming exclusive competition, where you can win a mixologist to recreate them for you and your friends. ● burtschips.com
MIX AND MATCH Try out one of these inventive flavour pairings yourself with The Burtini cocktail – perfect when paired with Burts Chips’ Vintage Cheddar & Spring Onion crisps.
Ingredients ◆◆ 50ml gin
◆◆ 10ml dry vermouth
◆◆ 3-4 slices of spring onion, muddled
Shake and double strain into a chilled martini glass. Serve with cube of mature cheddar on a stick.
— PART 3 —
EXCESS “WE FUMBLE IN A CELLAR WHERE AN INTERN ONCE FOUND A COLLECTION OF THE BRAND’S 1830 VINTAGE BY ACCIDENT” MIKE GIBSON TAKES A TRIP TO BOLLINGER’S HISTORIC WINERY IN AY, CHAMPAGNE, 098
104 BOTTLE SERVICE | 111 LONDON COCKTAIL WEEK | 112 THE DIGEST 116 UK TRAVEL | 118 THE SELECTOR | 130 DECONSTRUCT
Iconic champagne brand Bollinger’s continued success is no accident – it’s a combination of rare vineyards, sustainable viniculture and a distinguished history, writes Mike Gibson
Photograph by ###
SK A EUROPEAN winemaker to tell you the scariest story they can think of, and there’s a good chance most of them will tell you the same tale: the one about phylloxera. It’s been a long time since phylloxera – a plague of tiny insects that feed on grapevines – wiped out the vast majority of European vineyards in the 1940s, but winemakers today are still feeling its effects. The insects attacked almost all of Europe’s vines to such an extent that almost all continental wine you drink today – save for a few islands, like Santorini in Greece – will be made from vines that were brought over from the New World. They were then grafted on to the complex root systems that pull up nutrients from the earth and impart ‘terroir’, the soil’s character, onto the grapes. From Rioja to Bordeaux to Champagne – these regions are all running on borrowed vines. So, when looking around Champagne Bollinger’s own vineyard in the historic champagne-making village of Ay, just down the road from Epernay, it’s difficult not to feel a sense of history. Because the historic maison just happens to own the only two vineyards in the whole of Champagne that have, somehow, remained phylloxera-free. The brand uses pinot noir grapes from these two small vineyards, on years when the harvest is good enough, to make a very special wine: the Vieilles Vignes Françaises – literally ‘Old French Vines’. It retails at more than £1,000 per bottle, and remains the only champagne on the market that tastes exactly as it would have 100 years ago. The chances are you’ll never get to try this wine. If you feel like you’ve heard of this champagne brand’s name but you’re struggling trying to place it, I’ve got two words for you: Ab Fab. A glass of ‘Bolly’ is a hallmark of the sitcom, and has both helped spread the brand’s name in England – where there’s a huge market for it, as for most champagne brands – and imbued it with a certain reputation; one that’s possibly counteracted by a long-standing and rather more deliberate association with the Bond franchise. If you don’t know it from either, you may well have drunk it: the brand’s signature Special Cuvée is sold in supermarkets and wine shops around the UK, and, while Bollinger isn’t one of champagne’s powerhouses in terms of volume, it’s still a big player. I’m here in Ay not to discover the Special Cuvée (although plenty of it is drunk on our trip) – nor the Vieilles Vignes Françaises. I’m here for a closer look at the maison’s vintage champagnes. As you’d expect, these →
→ are wines made to celebrate a particular year’s harvest, if it’s especially good and can reflect the specific character of the grapes harvested. With the notable exception of Dom Pérignon and a few others, most champagne makers’ hero products (including Bollinger’s Special Cuvée) will largely be made up of the current years’ harvest of chardonnay, pinot noir and pinot meunier, topped up with blends of wines from different years. The master blender’s job – in Bollinger’s case the quiet, studied Gilles Descôtes – is to put aside the urge to be creative and instead ensure quality, but also consistency, above all else: there’s no age statement, so a Special Cuvée made in 2008 needs to taste pretty much the same as one made in 2013, and so on. La Grande Année, though, is different, and it’s here where Descôtes gets the chance to experiment. This is the name given to the house’s vintage champagnes, and they’re created precisely because they’re different. At a grand dinner at the former residence of the last matriarch of the house, Madame Bollinger, we get to taste a few different ones, alongside some classic (and delicious) French cooking. While the Special Cuvée – still an excellent champagne despite it being upstaged by its single-vintage counterparts on this occasion – is honeyed, with almond on the palate, lightly biscuity from being aged in contact with the lees (the yeast used in fermentation), the Grand Année 2007 is another thing entirely. It’s floral, with loads
DEEPER UNDERGROUND: (clockwise from top main) Inside wine gallery La Réserve; the cellars underneath the estate; a Bollinger plaque in a vineyard
of vanilla up top that gives way to orange blossom and honeysuckle notes. The Grand Année Rosé 2005 – a relatively recent foray for the house – is unlike any rosé I’ve tried before, sparkling or otherwise. Served in the brand’s characteristic wide glasses (champagne flutes, while traditional and attractive, aren’t a great vessel for aromatic wines as there’s hardly any room for them to breathe), it’s full of the fresh strawberry and raspberry notes you’d expect from a cool-climate sparkling rosé. But I taste it and it’s alive with flavours of cocoa butter and pistachio. As someone who’s more than happy to totally and unashamedly geek out about wine, to wax lyrical about aromas and flavours without particularly caring about sounding pretentious, this is a genuine treat. And it gets better when, after the Grand Année 2004 is brought out, there’s a surprise. It’s another Grand Année, but older, we’re told. It’s got a buttery popcorn smell that leaps out of the glass – a hallmark of champagnes that have aged for a long time in the bottle – but on the palate it’s still got a good amount of fresh fruit flavours. We take guesses – 1998, 1994 – before someone hits on it: 1989. A year older than me. The dinner that night, and in particular the wines served alongside it, are an excellent
primer for the next day. While we’re looking around vineyards – Tauxiers, an open slab of land where verdant green vines meet crushing grey skies, the only dot on the landscape a small shed, and ‘La Côte aux Enfants’, so-called because the steepness of its hills mean that only nimble children can get up there to pick the grapes – we learn that Bollinger is one of the few winemakers to have been imbued with the Sustainable Viticulture Award, and that all of its farming practices are organic. The reason it can’t claim to be a 100% organic product now is simply because of the roots: they reach so far down into the ground that some of the residual soil and the water table have probably come into contact with fertilisers and pesticides in the decades before. While perusing the vineyards and touring the winery, the creativity and history of what we’ve tasted the night before is fresh in the mind. It’s even more so when we take a deep dive into what we learn is the heart and soul of Bollinger’s operation: the cellars. Bollinger’s approach to wine places a huge emphasis on ageing – even in its Special Cuvée, the wines used are aged for an average of more than double what’s required by the regulations of the Champagne AOC – and we walk past countless magnums containing →
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HARD ’YARDS: (clockwise from top left) One of the vineyards owned by Bollinger; magnums of reserve wines from the cellars; the interior of La Galerie 1829
→ what Descôtes refers to as “reserve wines”; wines laid down to age ahead of being used as what he calls “spices” in the creation of the non-vintage wines, spiking them with hits of the deeply aromatic notes they hold. The cellars are beautiful, beguiling, snaking catacomb-like for literally miles underneath the village. They’re quietly immaculate in the geometry and symmetry of the paths, barrels and the backs of the innumerable reserve wine bottles. A thick layer of dust covers everything. We fumble in the dark around a tiny sub-cellar where, in 2010, an intern found a collection of the brand’s first vintage from 1830 entirely by accident. Needless to say, he has a job for life – Guillaume graduated from intern to an integral part of the brand’s team in the lab, where they study the effects of ageing and environment. Later, we walk past bottles of the most recent La Grande Année vintage (2014, which will likely be released in 2023), and a room of Special Cuvée that a sign tells me is stacked with just under 250,000 bottles, and I notice the paths in the cellars have street names. We follow Gilles through them, and at the end of one the history and tradition of the brand is hammered home. La Réserve is a newly renovated part of the cellar that’s home to some of the brand’s oldest and rarest reserve wines. It’s like a library, some of the bottles dating back to the late 1800s, each of them saying something about the time in history they were made. And in the adjacent Galerie 1829, there are some extremely old and rare bottles from elsewhere in the brand’s history. The 239 remaining bottles of La Grand Année 1973, for example – the wine served at the wedding
of Prince Charles and Princess Diana; Vieilles Vignes Françaises from the mid-1900s whose market value must be eye-watering. But if I thought the 1989 was a surprise, I was about to get an even bigger one. On a giant converted barrel sits a magnum of very, very old-looking champagne. I crane my neck to get a glance at the bottle and just about make out the vintage: 1937. Nineteen thirty-seven. It’s so old that it can’t legally be sold as champagne, because the pressure in the bottle will have fallen to below the Champagne AOC’s requirements, so the only place in the world it’ll ever be tasted is here in this room. Needless to say, I’m excited. There’s something ritualistic in the preparation of this piece of bottled history. We’re huddled in the dark chamber, no one daring to do more than breathe, as Descôtes slowly opens removes the cork with a very gentle hiss. He’s the first to try it, and he lapses into French upon tasting it. “C’est bon,”
THERE’S SOMETHING RITUALISTIC IN THE PREPARATION OF THIS PIECE OF BOTTLED HISTORY he murmurs. “C’est très, très bon.” It’s clear this is a treat even for him. I swill it lazily in my glass, trying to absorb every ounce of aroma. The nose is all honey and poached pears, and as I sip it I can’t help but break into a smile. It’s an 80-yearold wine but there’s still an absurd amount of fresh-fruit flavour – peach and a hint of orange peel – along with toffee notes, toast, biscuit, a bit of smoke – and there’s still a presence of fine bubbles, despite its age. It is, quite frankly, one of the most incredibletasting wines I’m likely to ever drink. And it’s a reminder of what an almighty product a beautiful champagne is: Bollinger might be constantly looking to innovate and stay current, but at its heart it’s producing wines in the same way it has for generations. You can’t buy history; but Bollinger shows that if you can harness it this spectacularly, you end up with something very special indeed. f champagne-bollinger.com
DISCOVER THE SURPRISING TWISTS OF NEW BASQUE CUISINE IN THE HEART OF BELGRAVIA
Michelin-starred Ametsa will take you on a culinary journey, pairing locally-sourced ingredients with the earthy flavours and techniques from Spainâ€™s Basque region. To make a reservation, please email email@example.com or call +44 20 7333 1234
KIND SPIRITS We run the rule over ethical spirits, plus weâ€™ve got a selection of organic English wines, and some organic beers, too PHOTOGRAPHY BY DAVID HARRISON
If you want to drink sustainably, look no further than these spirits brands: 1 SANTO DE PIEDRA MEZCAL, Oaxaca, Mexico. This new premium mezcal brand makes all its bottles from recycled glass, and also runs three social initiatives to help vulnerable youths in Oaxaca. 40%, 70cl; £66.95, thewhiskyexchange.com 2 FOURSQUARE 2004 CASK STRENGTH, Four Roads, Barbados. A cask-strength (undiluted) rum from Barbardian distillery Foursquare, which diverts and re-sells carbon dioxide from distillation to soft drinks companies. 59%, 70cl; £49.95, thewhiskyexhange.com 3 KETEL ONE VODKA, Schiedam, Netherlands. Ketel One’s Nolet Distillery produces green energy to power the whole operation and then some via a windmill (yep), as well as redistributing heat let off during distillation. 40%, 70cl; £22.95, 31dover.com 4 TALISKER SKYE, Skye, Scotland. Scotch distiller Talisker has stringent energy and water use targets, in accordance to owner Diageo’s commitment to cut CO₂ emissions in half by 2020. 45.8%, 70cl; £40.24; masterofmalt.com 5 THE BOTANIST GIN, Islay, Scotland. Infused mainly with botanicals sourced hyper-locally, The Botanist also runs a foundation that contributes to helping biodiversity and social causes. 46%, 70cl; £32.83; masterofmalt.com
Our great love is good food and we’re on a mission to celebrate some of the restaurant scene’s biggest stars with our upcoming...
ASTER CHEF SERIES
ed by Bloomberg’s Richard Vines, the Chef Series will see acclaimed chefs join na in the kitchen for one night only, creating an exclusive menu just for you...
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Aster Chef series with tom KitChin T O Continues BOOK Please with our reception team or email: mondAy 2ndenquire oCtober
firstname.lastname@example.org callof0203 875meat 5555 A four-course dinner, celebrating theorbest autumnal & game
TICKETS £90 with paired wines, booking£55 without Tickets shop.danddlondon.com £45, or £75 with paired wines 150 Victoria Street | London | Sw1e 5Lb | email@example.com | 0203 875 5555 | aster-restaurant.com |
THINK OF ENGLAND: The English wine scene is full of innovation, and organic wines are no longer a niche product in England. Our picks represent some of the best that can be found on the market.
Photograph by ###
1 FORTY HALL LONDON BRUT 2015, Enfield, UK. One of London’s only winemakers, Forty Hall took home a gong at the Soil Association’s BOOM Awards this year. The 2015 vintage is brand new on the market. 11.5%, 75cl; £28.99, fortyhallvineyard.com
2 DAVENPORT VINEYARDS HORSMONDEN 2015, Kent, UK. A dry organic white made with a complex blend of grapes by celebrated winemaker Will Davenport. 11.5%, 75cl; £13.75, davenportvineyards.co.uk
3 ALBURY SILENT POOL ROSÉ 2016, Guildford, UK. A still rosé by organic winemaker Albury in the Surrey Hills, made with two of the champagne blend grapes, pinot noir and pinot meunier. 10.5%, 75cl; £16.95, alburyvineyard.com
4 OXNEY ESTATE CLASSIC 2014, Beckley, UK. A classic champagne-style sparkler from one of England’s most lauded winemakers, whose vineyard and farms also feature tours and homestays. 12%, 75cl; £33, oxneyestate.com
1 STROUD BREWERY BIG CAT STOUT, Stroud, UK. A big, old dark beer from this Gloucestershire brewer, which harvests its barley from within a 15-mile radius of its HQ and serves up sourdough pizzas at its taproom. 4.5%, 500ml; £2.99 2 FREEDOM ORGANIC HELLES LAGER, Abbots Bromley, UK. A German-style lager made with organic Bavarian hops, from one of the UK’s first organic brewers. 4.8%, 330ml; £1.79 3 CELIA ORGANIC LAGER, Žatec, Czech Republic. A classic Czech lager made with organic barley that’s also been de-glutenised. 4.5%, 330ml; £2.95 4 BLACK ISLE ORGANIC RED KITE AMBER ALE, Scottish Highlands, UK. An irony amber ale from progressive Scottish brewer Black Isle. ll available from A abelandcole.co.uk
HOP TO IT: To be classed as organic, beer has to be made with at least 95% organic ingredients. Given that water and barley make up more than 95% of most beer recipes, the hops don’t actually have to be certified organic (although most are).
Photograph by ###
QUEEN OF SPIRITS Premium organic vodka Snow Queen has long graced the back-bars of London’s top drinking destinations. Now, bringing the spirit home is easier than ever
T’S HARD TO pin down exactly what it is that makes the experience of drinking in a top-level bar so memorable. Maybe it’s the setting – an opulent lounge, the quiet buzz of the room, the right glassware and pristine tabletops. It might be the service, with waiting staff and bartenders on hand to provide that special-occasion feel. Or maybe it’s the drinks themselves: prepared with the highest-quality ingredients with the deft touch of someone skilled in their craft. Going to a beautiful bar is always an experience, but that doesn’t mean that sipping on drinks made with the same ingredients and to a similar standard at home has to feel out of reach. Not when Snow Queen’s in the equation, anyway: the organic vodka has been a spirit of choice for hotel and destination bars across the capital for years; but with the spirit increasingly available to consumers and with a raft of highquality cocktail recipes available online,
it’s more attainable than you might think to reproduce some of that bar quality when you’re staying in. Snow Queen’s signature serves – for which recipes can be found easily on the brand’s website – have all been crafted with the help of genuine bartenders well-versed in the spirit’s distinctive flavour notes and texture. So when you look to master its Lavender Martini, Queen’s Elixir, Shrouded Martini, or any of the drinks you’ll find online, you can be safe in the knowledge that you’re creating something worthy of gracing any bar. And what’s more, with the brand’s innovative stockist locator tool, finding the ingredients to do just that is only a click away... ● For more information, go to snowqueenvodka.com,
or follow the brand on social media at
DO IT YOURSELF If you want to indulge in a bit of Provençal drinking in your own home, why not try making Snow Queen’s Lavender Martini for yourself? Check out the recipe below.
Ingredients ◆◆ 30ml Snow Queen Organic Vodka ◆◆ 15ml fresh lemon juice ◆◆ 10ml lavender syrup
◆◆ 1 tsp dried lavender buds
Stir the vodka, lemon juice and syrup over ice and strain into a coupe glass. Garnish with the lavender buds. All ingredients for the Lavender Martini, as well as Snow Queen Vodka itself, are available from Waitrose. For more information, cocktail recipes, and to use Snow Queen’s handy stockist locator tool, go to snowqueenvodka.com
FUTURE PERFECT Want to know what tools you’ll be cooking with in years to come? Head to KitchenAid’s Serious About Food kitchen lab during London Design Week
F YOU’RE ANYTHING like us, you probably dream of owning the perfect kitchen – one that makes preparing all those restaurant-quality dishes a breeze. But with so much high-tech wizardry on offer, what does that actually look like? Enter KitchenAid, the iconic brand that’s been kitting out kitchens since 1919, yet is still streets ahead when it comes to curating what we’ll be cooking
GET A HANDLE ON THE KITCHENS OF THE FUTURE WITH KITCHENAID 110
with in years to come. During London Design Festival in late September, head to KitchenAid’s London Experience Store, where the brand has enlisted eight international designers to imagine the perfect kitchen of the future for an exhibition entitled Serious About Food. At the show, open from 10am-6pm each day, you’ll be able to explore three different KitchenAid concepts – the Living Kitchen, the Dynamic Kitchen, and Beyond The Kitchen – and take part in a Makers’ Workshop that’ll combine traditional elements with advancing technology, and make sure your cooking stays ahead of the curve. ● Serious About Food runs 18-22 September. Visit seriousaboutfoodkitchen.com or follow KitchenAid on social media at @kitchenaid_uk
BLACK MAGIC While you’re exploring the high-tech KitchenAid Experience Store, you’ll also be able to get a sneak peek at the brand’s first complete black stainless steel appliance collection, including the Black Tie Stand Mixer, which perfectly demonstrates how KitchenAid marries timeless design with high performance. kitchenaid.co.uk
GET IN THE MIX
Cocktail hour? Forget about it. It’s time for London Cocktail Week – seven whole days for you to explore the city’s best serves, signature pours and bespoke blends
ONDON COCKTAIL WEEK isn’t just an excuse to spend seven days drinking your way around Town (although it’s that, too) – it’s a pretty big deal. As in, the largest cocktail festival in the entire world. With mixed drinks and their creators being held in such high regard by Londoners, it’s unsurprising that the capital is home to the event, and if you’ve yet to truly take advantage of all the creative cocktails available in the city, it’s the perfect opportunity. The seven-day event, which runs from 2-8 October, sees more than 250 bars offering discounted serves, bespoke blends and special events to those with a Cocktail Week digital pass. Once you’ve purchased the
pass, you’ll be granted access to bespoke £6 cocktails in participating bars, and there’s also the option to purchase a ticket for the Cocktail Village at Old Spitalfields Market. As the central hub of the week, the Village will take the form of an immersive maze packed full of pop-up cocktail bars, exciting experiences and food vendors. As well as the opportunity to indulge in some serious sampling, the week will offer a range of unique experiences where you can extend your cocktail knowledge and meet other like-minded souls, whether at a masterclass (where you can learn how to taste drinks like a pro), distillery tour (so you’ll know how vodka is made), party, tasting or an exclusive paired meal. See you there. f
THE KEY INFO
London Cocktail Week runs from 2-8 October. Digital passes cost £10 each, and can be purchased from drinkup.london/cocktailweek. The pass entitles you to £6 cocktails in more than 250 venues across the week, exclusive discounts in bars, restaurants and to ticketed events, and access to £5 advanced booking for London Cocktail Week’s Cocktail Village (on-the-door price £10). The pass is accessible on your phone via the DrinkUp.London app, which is free to download.
THE DIGEST FEEL-GOOD EATS
Giving to charity is great; but contributing to great causes simply by doing the things you love anyway? That’s even better. Take Charitable Bookings, for example: the charity acts as a booking service for some of London’s best restaurants, the difference being that by simply using the platform, £1 for each diner will be donated to a charity
COCOA LOCO If you, like us, are one of the many swept up by the speciality chocolate boom, you’re in luck: from 13-15 October, the Chocolate Show is back with a bang for its fifth year. Some of the world’s foremost chocolatiers will be in attendance at the event, which takes place at the Olympia exhibition centre in Kensington. As well as masterclasses, edible art pieces, competitions and workshops all on offer for guests, there’s even a restaurant devoted to the stuff. It’s a chance to get to grips with exactly why buying highquality, ethically sourced chocolate can make such a difference. thechocolateshow.co.uk
The month’s sustainable food and drink industry news
of your choice. But it gets better: the charity has just released an enormous recipe book (365 recipes across 754 pages, to be precise) that features dishes from top chefs including Marcus Wareing, Jun Tanaka, Claude Bosi and Pierre Koffmann. It’ll cost you £40, with £5 going directly to charity. A steal, considering it’s pretty much every recipe you’re ever likely to need. charitablebookings.org
As with any business that uses the land, promoting biodiversity is always likely to yield a positive result on the end product. That’s a mantra the Bolney Estate has stuck to for the 35 years it’s been making wine, which is why its recent partnership with Kew Gardens makes total sense to us. As well as being a Unesco World Heritage site, Kew is a scientific organisation that focuses on plant diversity. The resultant Kew Collection includes two sparkling wines (a white and a rosé), and unites the pair’s passion for sustainability. bolneywineestate.com; kew.org
SEASONAL CHANGE In a world full to the brim with technological solutions to even the most everyday problems, it’s a surprise that chefs still rely on pieces of paper to keep up with the availability and quality of their produce. That’s Natoora’s way of thinking, anyway, which is why the fruit and vegetable wholesaler has just introduced an app that can quantify all this information into an easy-to-follow stream of information. It’ll allow chefs to track what’s in season and available at the touch of a button, with the hope of making better produce available at shorter notice and reducing wastage. natoora.com
Photograph by [Cocoa loco} Elisabeth Kurtis; [Oh snap] Gabriela Vivacqua
In case your Instagram feed didn’t give it away, food and drink makes for pretty fertile ground for camera lenses. That’s why the Pink Lady Food Photographer of the Year exists: to present to the world the cream of the crop of the world’s food photographers and their snaps. As of late summer, 2018’s competition is open, inviting photographers of all ages across the globe to submit their work for consideration. Chef judges include Ferran Adria, Pierre Koffmann and Alison Morley, while iconic food photographer David Loftus is the chair of judges. Action Against Hunger is this year’s charity partner. Find out more about foodism’s involvement in the competition at fdsm.co/pink-lady
PUT IT ON RED In this day and age, every food service company, big or small, has a duty to approach their business with sustainability front and centre in their thinking. Luckily, food and drink accreditors can provide consumers with the knowledge that what they’re buying is ethically and sustainably sound – Red Tractor being one of them. British crisp maker Burts is now a proud
bearer of the Red Tractor logo, which means that when you buy a packet of the brand’s crisps, you know you’re getting a product that’s been made with potatoes that are responsibly sourced, and have been processed and packed in the UK. The first two Burts flavours to bear the logo will be Smoked Crispy Bacon and Fish N’ Chips, with the rest of the range set to follow them in the not-too-distant future. burtschips.com
SUCCESS STORIES This year’s Diplomats of a New Era are shining examples of modern creativity and perseverance, and we’ve provided a glimpse of just what makes them tick
HE ENTRIES ARE in, and at the time of writing, the first two of Venezuelan rum brand Diplomático’s Diplomats of a New Era 2017 are ready to be revealed. If you’re unfamiliar with this year’s initiative, allow us to fill you in: foodism and Diplomático have teamed up to present a select group of entrepreneurial creatives that share the brand’s deeply-held valued of modernday diplomacy – values first laid out by the man on the bottle, Don Juancho. This year’s Diplomats all differ in their approaches, personalities, and in the businesses they’ve guided towards mainstream success. But what unites them is a deep passion for their craft
and a relentless sense of ambition, as well as a bold creative streak. For the campaign, each of them has worked with a top London bartender to have a cocktail created to complement them and their brand. We’ve also created videos that provide an inside look at each one’s business, and an insight into exactly what makes them tick. The first two Diplomats are detailed overleaf. Follow their stories, and maybe you’ll be inspired to start an adventure of your own. And if you want an even closer look, see right to find out how you could attend a special foodism reader event celebrating the Diplomats and their unique success stories.
WATCH THE DIPLOMATS’ VIDEOS, FOLLOW THEIR STORIES, AND MAYBE YOU’LL START AN ADVENTURE OF YOUR OWN
Jenny Costa, Rubies in the Rubble
Rory Harker, Billy Tannery
“The biggest piece of advice I was given when I started Rubies,” Jenny says in her Diplomat video, “was to go for it full-heartedly.” It’s a mantra she’s stuck to from the off, turning her vision – making condiments with otherwisediscarded fruit and vegetables – into a thriving business, seeing her range of sauces, relishes and ketchups stocked in Harrod’s and Selfridges, and teaming up for collaborations with some of London’s hottest chefs along the way. In her video, she talks about what gets her out of bed in the morning, while her eponymous cocktail, a refreshing long drink designed by Jon Hall of Satan’s Whiskers, makes use of Rubies’ ketchups as well as Diplomático’s Mantuano rum.
You’d expect a graphic designer-turnedfashion maverick to have a close eye and a steady hand. That’s exactly what Rory Harker possesses. As co-founder and creative director of Billy Tannery – which makes luxury leather goods from kid goat hides, and also sets out to right some wrongs in the goat meat trade in the process – he brings a sense of cool collectedness to his business. That personality is mirrored in his bespoke cocktail G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time, a manhattan-style serve made with Diplomático’s charcoal-filtered Planas rum, created by Matt Whiley, founder of Peg + Patriot and Scout. ●
Watch Jenny’s Diplomat video and see her bespoke cocktail recipe at fdsm.co/jenny-costa
Watch Rory’s Diplomat video and see his bespoke cocktail recipe at fdsm.co/rory-harker. Find out more about the Diplomats of a New Era campaign at fdsm.co/diplomático
BOOK YOUR PLACE AT THE EVENT
Photograph by David Harrison
If all this talk of adventure has your curiosity piqued, you’ll be excited to know that this autumn, you can get up-close and personal to this year’s campaign. 100 foodism readers will meet the Diplomats and sip on their cocktails at an exclusive event at a top London venue. The setting and date are, at the time of writing, to be confirmed – so keep your eye on the website for more information. Register your interest for the event at fdsm.co/ diplomatico. Read more about the campaign at wearethediplomats.com/en
Lydia Winter goes hyper-local at the beautiful New Forest's food-centric boutique bolthole, Lime Wood Lime Wood When the opportunity to stay at Lime Wood arose, we hopped on a train to Southampton faster than you can say “Angela Harnett’s pasta.” Of course, you can sample the Michelin-starred chef’s cooking in London at her restaurants Murano and Café Murano, but when it comes with a slice of the New Forest National Park, one of the most inviting hotels we’ve ever stayed in, and an incredible spa (that uses Bamford’s eco-friendly products), we know which we’d rather. First, the food. Hartnett has partnered with head chef Luke Holder for this southcoast outpost to create a menu of Italianinspired dishes that leverage the area’s local produce, veg grown inside the hotel’s greenhouse, and meats smoked in its
From £330 per night; Beaulieu Road, Lyndhurst, Hampshire, SO43 7FZ. For more information, see limewoodhotel.co.uk
HAMPSHIRE ◆◆ Population: 1.32 million ◆◆ Area: 1,455sq m ◆◆ Key city: Southampton
You might know Hampshire more for the cities of Portsmouth and Southampton than its farms, but the New Forest is a vibrant destination for food and drink venues and producers.
Photographs by Amy Murrel
Keen to explore more of the UK's tastiest destinations? Go to foodism.co.uk for food and drink guides around the country, and further afield, too.
smokehouse. On our visit, we attacked a plate of locally sourced charcuterie before getting very well acquainted with lamb saddle and broad beans, and rounding things off with a strawberry and almond tart. Just a squiz at the most recent menu suggests herb-crusted rabbit with crispy pig trotter and romesco sauce; ravioli with smoked ricotta and preserved lemon and pickled samphire; and new season lamb with sweetbread ragout and peas. We could go on and on. And on. But there’s more. Oh yes. You can also book yourself into Lime Wood’s cookery school to learn about everything from butchery to macarons… And that pasta. f
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If all this sustainability talk has stirred a new-found passion for ethical eating in you, head to these restaurants and bars, where you’ll be able to champion the cause just by having drink or eating a delicious meal. You’re very welcome…
In association with
See the full range and recipes at angosturabitters. com and angosturarum.com
RAISING THE BAR It’s not just restaurants getting on board the ethical train – these bars are at it too. From rootinfused tinctures to social enterprises, here’s where to get your mitts on a sustainable serve. Cheers to that
1 London Cocktail Club 4 Great Portland Street, W1W 8QJ
As well as pouring award-winning cocktails at ten locations throughout the city, London Cocktail Club was voted Get Hired Champion by the Prince’s Trust earlier this year, for putting on Get Hired events and helping to provide tonnes of jobs for young people from all over London. Now that’s worth raising a glass (or five) to. And if you want to get in on the action yourself, you can go to one of its mixology masterclasses, where you’ll learn to muddle, shake, garnish and drink three of the bar’s signature serves. 020 7580 1960; londoncocktailclub.co.uk
BEST OF THE REST 2 Dandelyan 20 Upper Ground, SE1 9PD
Ryan Chetiyawardana’s – Mr Lyan – sustainability credentials need little introduction, and it’s a passion he brings to each of his projects. Not least Dandelyan at the Mondrian Hotel, a plush, purple and green space with a lavish 1970s vibe that serves botany-inspired cocktails that use slightly off-the-wall ingredients like root-infused tinctures to delicious effect. Sustainability aside, this bar is worth a visit in its own right: its team recently scooped World’s Best Cocktail Bar, Best International Bar Team and Best International Hotel Bar at the prestigious World’s Best Bars list. 020 3747 1063; morganshotelgroup.com
3 Fairly Square 51 Red Lion St, WC1R 4PF Photograph by ###
Sustainability is as much about people as it is about the environment, and that’s why we’re fans of Fairly Square: all of the spirits, beers and wines it has on offer are all – you guessed it – Fairtrade, as are the products used in its snacks and sharing menu. And the ethos
extends from the menu to the interiors, using recycled and repurposed materials – even the tiling grout is made from recycled glass.
020 7430 9276; fairly-square.com
4 65 & King 65 Westbourne Grove, W2 4UJ
Serving locally inspired cocktails like the Carnival Zombies and the Trellick Tower, this Westbourne Grove drinking den blends creative serves with low lights and glammedup Art Deco interiors. The team are always committed to serving daily specials that use whatever fresh fruit is in season and available in the market that day.
020 7229 2233; 65king.com
5 Graphic 4 Golden Square, W1F 9HT
Part of the small, boutique Urban Leisure Group, which prides itself on a central focus on sustainability and seasonality, Soho-based Graphic will dazzle you with a list of no less than 305 world-class gins and vibrant murals by local artists on its walls. 020 7287 9241; graphicbar.com
1 The Gate
GIVE A FORK
370 St John Street, EC1V 4NN
Not only does The Gate dish up delicious, inventive vegetarian food, but there’s another string to its bow: it’s the first UK restaurant to be accredited as autism-friendly. The restaurant group has been associated with specialist school Ambitious about Autism since 2014 and runs a programme called The Chocolate Project that helps autistic children and teenagers build their own chocolate business. 020 7278 5483; thegaterestaurants.com
More than simply places to eat, these cafés and restaurants are also social enterprises 2
BEST OF THE REST 2 Paper & Cup
4 Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen
18 Calvert Avenue, E2 7JP
15 Westland Place, N1 7LP
This chicly outfitted bookshop and café in Shoreditch is the perfect spot to while away an hour or three. It’s run by the Spitalfields Crypt Trust, a local charity providing support and training to people who have been homeless or suffer from addiction, poverty or social isolation, and each of its baristas is a trainee who’s been rehabilitated through one of the Trust’s programmes. 020 7739 5358; paperandcup.co.uk
This restaurant has topped good food lists for years, but what you might not know is that it’s completely non-profit. Every year, the kitchen recruits 15 young people aged 18-25 and trains them to become professional chefs through its highly regarded apprentice programme, teaching them love and respect for food, as well as vital hospitality skills such as bakery and butchery. 020 3375 1515; fifteen.net
5 Old Spike Roastery
5 Stable Street, N1C 4AB
54 Peckham Rye, SE15 4JR
From the bacon naan to the chai lattes, it’s safe to say that Dishoom knows a thing or two about a banging breakfast. And it’s putting that knowledge to good use – for each meal it serves, it provides a ‘magic’ breakfast to a child that would otherwise go hungry. Working with two charities – Magic Breakfast in London and The Akshaya Patra Foundation in India – it’s now donated over one million meals. 020 7420 9321; dishoom.com
First and foremost, Old Spike is about seriously good coffee – but it’s also about social impact. The boutique coffee roaster provides expert training, jobs and housing support for people experiencing homelessness around the UK, whether it’s someone who has approached them off the streets or an individual who wants to turn their life around and start earning a living.
BEST OF THE REST 2 Riverford at Duke of Cambridge
4 Tienda Roosteria
30 St Peter’s Street, N1 8JT
45 Curtain Road, EC2A 3PT
Sometimes it’s not just about streamlining your menu to cut down on what you’re throwing away, it’s about making sure even the waste doesn’t go to waste. And the Duke of Cambridge, run by sustainable food power couple Geetie Singh and Guy Watson is doing just that, by combining all-organic Riverford produce with an anaerobic digester – a piece of kit that generates energy from unusable kitchen leftovers. 020 7359 3066; dukeorganic.co.uk
Located in hip Shoreditch hotel and members’ club The Curtain, Tienda Roosteria is a no-frills-except-the-interiors taqueria with a strong line in cocktails. Expect sustainably imagined serves that make use of leftover ingredients from around the rest of the hotel: think orgeat syrup made with unused corn tortillas and cocktails garnished with spare stems of mint and coriander. 020 3146 4545; thecurtain.com
5 Gourmet Goat
74 Westbourne Grove, W2 5SH
Unit 27a Rochester Walk, SE1 9AF
Two things feed into the ethos of this veggie restaurant: your health, and the health of the planet – and it manages to do a stellar job for both with delicious dishes of organic vegetarian food that both cleanse the body and respect the natural provenance of great produce. By using the whole plant from root to fruit, and composting anything that can’t be used, waste is kept to an absolute minimum. 020 7221 0705; farmacylondon.com
This award-winning eastern-Mediterraneaninspired eatery doesn’t just keep its packaging and food waste low on-site in Borough Market, it puts in a shift for sustainability in UK farming, too. By using infamously underused meats like kid goat and rose veal from highwelfare, organic dairy farms, Gourmet Goat is able to ensure both maximum flavour and minimum environmental impact. 020 8050 1973; gourmetgoat.co.uk
THE BARE MINIMUM
Thoughtful restaurants going to every length possible to ensure the least amount of waste 1 Cub 155 Hoxton Street, London, N1 6PJ Photograph (Cub) by Xavier Buendia
Lovechild of Brighton zero-waste chef Doug McMaster and perishable-free mixologist Mr Lyan, Cub – just opened in Hoxton – doesn’t just break the mould for sustainable eating in London, it does so with style. Going beyond simple drink and dish pairing, its aim is to approach both taste and tipple as a united entity, and push every ingredient to its limit while discarding as little as possible. 020 3693 3202; lyancub.com
1 St. John Maltby 41 Maltby Street, SE1 3PA
If one person were responsible for us making this list in the first place, it’d be Fergus Henderson, king of classic British nose-to-tail eating and co-head of the St. John Group. His Maltby Street site is a laid-back (and walletfriendly-ish) place to dive head-over-tail into the likes of crispy pig’s cheek, devilled kidneys on toast, and Trotter Gear – pig trotters cooked in madeira and a rich stock. 020 7553 9844; stjohngroup.uk.com
RIGHT ON THE NOSE Nose-to-tail eating isn’t a fad: it’s sustainable and delicious. Here’s where you should head
BEST OF THE REST 2
2 Smoking Goat
4 Paradise Garage
7 Denmark Street, WC2H 8LZ
254 Paradise Row, E2 9LE
Serving up spicy Thai barbecue with an ever-increasing focus on all-animal eating, Soho’s Smoking Goat will be expanding to a new site on Shoreditch High Street, most likely by late October. Expect authentic Southeast Asian-inspired dishes that include ingredients like smoky duck offal, suckling pig liver and turbot heads. @smokinggoatbar; smokinggoatsoho.com
The worst thing about nose-to-tail eating is that with beef and pork, there’s no way you can have a go at every cut in a single meal. Paradise Garage has a solution: a five-piece rabbit picnic for two, including roast rabbit saddle, barbecued leg, confit shoulder turnover, grilled offal and rabbit bacon. Sure, it might not be the whole hog, but we’re sold. 020 7613 1502; paradise254.com
3 Nape by Cannon & Cannon
5 Smoke & Salt
21 Camberwell Church Street, SE5 8TR
Pop Brixton, 49 Brixton Station Road, SW9 8PQ
With snacking stools up front and proper tables to the back, Borough Market’s Cannon & Cannon’s first foray into the restaurant scene is all about cured meat, good wine and everything that entrails (sorry, entails). Expect to see all a stellar selection of British meats, from Cornish chorizo to nape: the marbly neck cut from which the bar takes its name. 020 3601 4418; napelondon.com
Pop-up maestros Remi Williams and Aaron Webster have finally got their first permanent site, housed in one of Pop Brixton’s shipping containers. Head there for the likes of Wiltshire beef heart with new potatoes and a creamy blue cheese sauce, lamb belly (most recently in the form of knock-your-socks-off merguezspiced tartare), and chicken heart skewers. 074 2132 7556; smokeandsalt.com
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BROADGATE RESTAURANT-HOPPING TOURS New for London Restaurant Festival 2017, our Broadgate Restaurant-Hopping Tour visits some of the city’s most iconic and up and coming restaurants across the Broadgate neighbourhood, at the centre of one of the most exciting and vibrant parts of London. Experience ﬁve restaurants in one day for £45, including Shoryu Ramen, Claw, José Pizarro and Crab Tavern.
SOMEWHERE TO STAY DURING LONDON RESTAURANT FESTIVAL Receive 20% oﬀ your bed and breakfast stay at the 5* Andaz London Liverpool Street hotel in the heart of East London. When when you book a stay between 2 July and 31 October 2017 and stay between 1 October and 31 October 2017. Quote promo code LRF17 when booking. *Oﬀer subject to availability and excludes blackout dates: 14, 25 and 28 October 2017.
BARBECOA TASTING MENU Barbecoa is one of London’s ﬁnest steakhouses from Jamie Oliver, featuring traditional ﬁre-based cooking techniques from around the world. Oﬀering slow-cooked, dry-aged meat, amazing cocktails, great wine and outrageous desserts, the new restaurant fully merits its landmark location in St James’s London. Join our four course tasting menu at Barbecoa for £50 per person, with drinks included.
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HOME COMFORTS Make sure this autumn is packed full of flavour with these new ranges and brands from Lakeland, which take humble kitchen accessories to the next level
HETHER THE ONSET of autumn has ignited the cooking bug or you’re just looking to make some changes, Lakeland has the answer. Three new ranges, exclusive to Lakeland and available in-store and online, will ensure your kitchen’s kitted out in style.
these new fermentation jars are an essential purchase. Have a go at producing your own sauerkraut and kimchi in the glass jars: they’re specially designed with an air-release valve in the lid that makes the whole process completely foolproof.
If you’re fully on board with the current trend for all things fermented,
Instill a sense of NYC-cool into your kitchen with CRUX, a range of electrical
goods inspired by, and designed in, the Big Apple. The sleek collection includes blenders, toasters and coffee machines (pictured, above), all in graphite and brushed stainless steel with rose gold accents. It’s not all about looks, though – each product is packed with useful extras, offering high-spec performance to match their design. The Bake and Blend stand mixer (£199.99) is a brilliant-value buy for anyone keen to join the homebaking revolution.
EdgeKeeper EdgeKeeper knives aren’t just useful, they’re also clever: each one – from the 9cm paring knife to the 20cm chef’s knife – comes with a built-in sharpener in their protective cases, so they remain totally on point without any effort required from you. Now that’s what we like to call razor-sharp thinking... ● Find out more information and shop these and more ranges at lakeland.co.uk
THE SAUCE CODE Lee Kum Kee’s founder might have invented the original oyster sauce by accident, but the brand has gone from strength to strength since then
HROUGHOUT HISTORY, SOME of the biggest discoveries have happened by accident. And, while the creation of oyster sauce might not necessarily have affected the course of history, it certainly had a profound effect on East Asian cooking, going from an inadvertent invention to a staple of many Chinese and Western kitchens. The story started in Lee Kum Sheung’s kitchen. Lee, the founder of Chinese sauce company Lee Kum Kee, left a pot of a soup made with fresh oysters simmering longer than he intended, and came back to find a thick reduction, full of rich umami flavours, which tasted delicious.
LEE KUM KEE’S OYSTER SAUCE HAS GONE FROM AN ACCIDENTAL INVENTION TO A STAPLE OF MODERN KITCHENS
Today, Lee Kum Kee’s oyster sauce is made with fully matured oysters, aged between two and three years, cooked on the same day they’re harvested from the farms. This means when you use the sauce – like simply stir-frying chicken fillets with oyster sauce and spring onion for an authentic Chinese flavour – you’re tasting a direct descendent of Lee’s recipe. Now that’s what we call a happy accident. ● Lee Kum Kee’s range of sauces are available at all good supermarkets. For more information, go to LKK.com
Simple. Local. Exceptional.
Death’s Door Spirits takes its name from the stretch of water, Death’s Door Passageway, which the wheat and juniper must cross on its way from the fields of Washington Island to the distillery in Madison, Wisconsin. This wheat along with corn and malted barley form a flavourful base for a surprisingly simple botanical mix: whole juniper berries, coriander and fennel seeds, flavoured through vapour extraction. Fresh juniper; a spicy citrusy middle, a cooling, herbal finish from the fennel. WW W.DE AT HSD OOR SPI RI TS.COM
TIDEFORD ORGANICS, THE UK’S FIRST ORGANIC, VEGAN RANGE.
We believe that the best thing anyone can do for the environment is to eat more veg + less meat. Our delicious range of soups, sauces, pestos + miso are all organic, vegan + gluten-free, so you can be sure they’re good for you + the planet. Take the pledge to eat more veg at tidefordorganics.com
ORGANIC, VEGAN, GLUTEN FREE, DAIRY FREE, NO ADDED SUGAR ● To advertise in this section please call 020 7819 9999
NUTS ABOUT VEG South Kensington restaurant Squirrel makes it easier than ever to eat nutritious, healthy food on the go, and it’s celebrating veg this September
EARS AGO, THE ideas of food on the go and of healthy, nutritious meals were rarely spoken about in the same breath. Now, though, fast-casual restaurants like South Kensington’s Squirrel are making health-forward food you can enjoy in minutes a reality.
SQUIRREL IS MAKING HEALTHFORWARD FOOD YOU CAN ENJOY IN MINUTES 128
And it’s a good thing, too. In a city like London, where people in work are generally pressed for time and often desk-bound, eating food that not only tastes good, but does good, is fundamental to living a good life. And with Squirrel’s light, often vegetableforward fast cuisine, that’s exactly what it can help you to achieve. Whether you’re ordering for delivery at your desk, popping in to grab a quick meal on the go, or dining in at its lush, verdant treehouse (yes, there’s a treehouse in South Kensington), you can trust Squirrel to give your day a delicious boost. Give it a try next time you’re in the area, and check out how you could get even closer to Squirrel’s cuisine to the right... ● wearesquirrel.com
SMASHING PUMPKIN To mark the return of National Fruit and Veg Month this September, championing plant-based food in all its forms, and to mark the occasion there’s something special going on at Squirrel. Throughout the month, the restaurant is inviting you to share pictures of your wonky veg on Instagram, making sure to tag @wearesquirrel and use the hashtag #NutsAboutHealth. The person crowned the winner – the one with the wonkiest veg – will have their portrait carved onto a pumpkin by a skilled vegetable carver at the restaurant. Get snapping...
â—? To advertise in this section please call 020 7819 9999
GREEN PEAS: Peas are an incredibly eco-friendly food, thanks to the fact that they make their own nitrogen, meaning they require less synthetic fertilizer. If harvested sustainably, they can enrich the soil they’re grown in.
Photograph by UIG via Getty Images
Freshly podded or frozen (we won’t mention tinned or mushy), and a staple on many a dinner plate, there’s much more to the perennially popular pea than you’d think
TWO PEAS IN A POD: Actually, there’s usually more than that. The peas we eat make up only a tiny part of the plant itself. They’re just the seeds, harvested from within the pods, which develop from the flower.
Each of our 100% responsibly sourced Scottish LochmuirTM salmon fillets* contains a weekâ€™s worth of omega 3
*Based on one portion of Scottish Lochmuirâ„˘ Salmon Fillets (115g). See marksandspencer.com for our Seafood Sourcing Policy. Subject to availability.
Published on Sep 13, 2017