‘A dream job’: chef Gabriel Gaté on eating his way through the Tour de France: French chef extraordinaire Gabriel Gaté may have the best job in the world. For more than half of the year he travels the spectacularly scenic route of the 21-stage Tour de France bicycle race, sampling produce from artisan cheese-makers, pastry chefs and winemakers.
Chef Sean Brock Puts Down the Bourbon and Begins a New Quest: CHARLESTON, S.C. — Sean Brock went to rehab. That might not seem terribly remarkable today, in the golden age of recovery. But this was Sean Brock, the Southern culinary revivalist with an arm covered in vegetable tattoos, who had collected vintage bottles of American bourbon like a maniacal museum curator. Mr. Brock wasn’t the kind of chef who drank during work, but he was often the last man standing at the end of a night saturated with Budweiser and Jägermeister. In some circles, his name had become a verb. After a long stretch on the line, one cook might look at another and say, “Let’s get Brocked.”
The evidence is clear: insecticides kill bees. The industry denials look absurd: The extermination of 15,000 honey bees in Anglesey by council pest control officers who mistook the rare black bees for wasps is an unhappy accident. The fact it has made the news shows a society slowly coming to its senses. Most of us get the idea that without bees and other pollinating insects, human life would rapidly collapse. Those of us who have lived long enough remember the “moth snowstorm” (the phrase is Mike McCarthy’s) that smattered car windscreens on summer nights, and worry about its absence.
The 10 ways recipes are undermining your cooking: Only bell-ends write open letters.” Whoever said that – if it wasn’t Shakespeare it must have been Oscar Wilde – had a point. All the same, I’ve taken the liberty of writing one. It’s to all the food writers and chefs who serve up recipes, in print or online. What’s my message? Get your act together. You have the chance to educate your readers, to teach skills that will fill their bellies and enrich their lives, yet time and time again you blow it. Not all of you, of course – but too many of you, too often.
Two women chefs turning up the heat in the kitchen: It is a welcome sign of the restaurant business’s growing maturity that news of a woman chef opening her own place is no longer thought a novelty. In London, the trickle is now a torrent: this year, Monica Galetti, Anne-Sophie Pic and Clare Smyth – all chefs with impeccable credentials – are joining the ranks of the capital’s restaurateurs.
My addresses: food writer Rachel Roddy on Rome: “Whatever can be fried is good to eat” is a common proverb in southern Italy. With that in mind, order all the fritti at much-loved trattoria Cesare al Casaletto: anchovies, small coral-coloured octopus and, when in season, whole artichokes fried until they look like a crisp bronze flower. Chef Leonardo Vignoli prepares classic Roman dishes thoughtfully — particularly good are tonnarelli tangled around flakes of salt cod with a cream of pecorino, and tenderly braised lamb with vinegar and rosemary. Away from the historic centre, Cesare is an easy tram ride on the reliable number eight from Piazza Venezia to the end of the line at Casaletto. From May to October, book a table on the cool vine-covered terrace.
What is the truth about biodynamics: Weingut Odinstal isn’t easy to find. The challenge is to spot the narrow path from the nearby village of Wachenheim, and follow it up a steep slope – at 350 metres above sea level, these are the highest vineyards in the region. Finally, there is the stone house with the wide kitchen, where owner Thomas Hensel offers coffee.
Gorgeous wines from Georgia: With a wine tradition that stretches back 8,000 years and more than 500 indigenous grapes to choose from, David Williams has managed to select just three great Georgian wines for you to try.
A gathering of the best minds on fine wine:Get-togethers for wine professionals tend to follow a pattern. We meet, we taste, we sometimes eat, and then we disperse, usually feeling more well-disposed towards the world than when we arrived. But two weekends ago I was invited to what sounded like a more cerebral gathering. The invitation promised “getting the best brains in the wine biz together with some leading lights of the international political, economic, cultural and tech world for a small Camp David-style powwow to wrap heads collectively around the big topics and trends likely to define the next decade”.