Filming Saturday Kitchen

(by susie)

There were two reasons I was particularly excited about today’s SK shoot in Welwyn Garden City.  First of all, I had a couple of totally contrasting recipes to match a wine to (not always the case), and secondly, one of them was a warm chocolate fondant – my idea of heaven on a plate.

This coming Saturday the chefs will be Adam Byatt of Clapham’s superb Trinity restaurant and John Campbell, whose sensational cooking Pete and I were lucky enough to sample a couple of years ago when we treated ourselves to a short stay at the Vineyard in Stockcross.  It was there that we were introduced to the joy of meat cooked sous vide.  John has since moved on to the Dorchester group and his culinary creations are as fabulous as ever.

Anyway back to today.  Well, it certainly wasn’t as exciting as Pete’s last shoot in Fareham, which (for those of you who missed it) involved large guns and a Percy Pig taste off – but we did manage to squeeze in an interview with the local press and a mini photo shoot with the delightful staff of Waitrose for their in-house magazine.  I also found wine matches that I am genuinely excited about, which is frankly what our job is all about.

So what will be happening in the SK kitchen this week?  Well, Adam Byatt is going to be cooking up roast monkfish with nutty couscous salad, asparagus and basil oil.  It’s a lovely, Mediterranean-style dish and to be honest a whole host of white wines would taste delicious with it.  What it basically needs is something crisp and refreshing that enhances the flavour of the fish and stands up to the asparagus and basil.  We decided that it shouldn’t be anything too oaky or powerful and so we tried a Verdicchio, a Mâcon, a New World Sauvignon and a Verdejo – and although there wasn’t a clear winner, one of them did just have the edge.

We weren’t able to cook John’s dish before the shoot as the recipe arrived too late in the day, but if any wine can cope with John’s heady combination of chocolate fondant with caramelised hazelnuts, coffee mousse and orange espumo, that wine has to be ……  no, I can’t say, I’d probably get the sack if I did- so tune in to BBC1 at 10am on Saturday and all will be revealed.  And let’s hope the chefs and guests are as excited about the wines in the studio as I was about a gooey chocolate fondant in WGC.