As part of my day job, I often get invited along to see venues. Now, on the whole, I usually say a polite thanks but no thanks and pass the invitation onto one of the team. However, when I was invited to my first Eventopedia meeting, there was no way I was passing on this, so much so I flew back from an event and went directly there. This excitement was caused by Aveqia, a venue in the city where you get to cook with some amazing chefs, in our case Michelin recognised, and then enjoy the spoils of your hard work. This is all about interactive cooking, not a lesson but rather a great way to connect with others, whether that be your team or clients. So excited was I, I had my first drink in eight weeks, although just a taste of each of our paired wines.
After a chilled glass of bubbly on arrival, we were taken into the incredible kitchen and shown the four stations, plus the all important fifth station where the wine and nibbles can be found to sustain you while you cook.
We split into teams; pre starter, starter, main and dessert. I went for pre starter and my new team and I set about making Smoked Salmon tartare, lardo, oyster cream, red pepper vinaigrette and horseradish mayonnaise with soy caviar.
The time flew by and,before we knew it, we were all seated round a long table with each team serving the others. I have to say, ours was very good and so it should – we were cooking to Michelin star standards after all. Had I been alone, it’s entirely possible I would have drunk the oyster cream straight from the jug.
Next, we had pan fried mackerel and squid, with a ratatouille compote, parsley crumble, black olive tapenade and chicken jus. For me, this was the weakest of the dishes and I love mackerel but regular readers (hi mum) will know I’m no lover of ratatouille.
Every element on the plate worked brilliantly together. I loved the different textures of cauliflower. Perfect, even with us amateurs at the helm.
Dessert was plum tatin, with an apple and pear chutney, caramel gel, chocolate arlette, shiso and yoghurt sorbet. It wasn’t for me.
With each course,David and Roger,our chefs poured us a matched wine, they were all excellent, and not just because I hadn’t had a drink in weeks!
This was a really brilliant night and a great way to get to know each other. For me or any foodie it’s a dream come true. They are planning on some new events in the evenings so, if this is your hood, it’s definitely one to watch.