Episode 35 Andrew Stephen
CEO Sustainable Restaurant Association

I think it’s fair to say that over the last decade, we’re all trying to do our bit to help the planet. Whether it’s getting rid of single-use plastic or recycling, we know what we should be doing.

But actually, there’s one area of our lives that trumps all that effort:  what we eat. As you’ll hear in this week’s conversation with Andrew Stephen, the CEO of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, the power of your appetite is phenomenal. As an individual, what you choose to eat, and where and when you choose to eat it, represent your biggest impact on the natural world.

As you’ll also hear, nothing is straightforward about the choices you make. For instance, soy is praised by many for replacing dairy products, but criticised by others for its part in the deforestation of the Amazon.

That is why the SRA is such a brilliant organisation. It helps restaurants and diners to find their way through the maze and understand how they can become more sustainable in a range of practical, achievable ways.

Episode 30 Hugo Hardman and
Arthur Voelcker – Chalkstream

In this episode we’re going to learn about farmed fish. When Hugo Hardman and Arthur Voelcker launched ChalkStream® in 2015, people tended to dismiss farmed trout as small, bony and muddy; salmon’s much poorer cousin.   

That’s why, in the early days, they had to get right in front of chefs, and show them what farmed trout could really become – if it was grown in fast-flowing clear waters that mimic the conditions of the fish’s natural habitat: the Test and Itchen chalk stream rivers in Hampshire.   

As you’ll hear, their so-called ‘power point presentation’ of a framed photograph and a large glistening trout on ice, worked wonders.  Now ChalkStream clients include big names such as P&O Ferries, British Airways and Wimbledon, as well as top restaurants all over the UK… and the trout farmers Hugo and Arthur work with face a much more secure future. 

Discover how, in the space of a few years, this partnership has managed to shake up trout farming in an impressively sustainable way.   

https://www.chalkstreamfoods.co.uk

Episode 29 James Golding
The Pig restaurants with rooms

James Golding’s impressive chef career has come full circle. Yes, he’s worked with some very big names in London and New York. He learned his craft under Anton Edelmann at The Savoy and then moved to Le Caprice, working for Mark Hix. And as Head Chef at Soho House in New York, his team cooked for A list actors, music stars and royalty.  

But he began his culinary journey in and around the New Forest, foraging for mushrooms with his dad, and getting ‘bored out of his mind’ at Mr Bartlett’s, the butchers, when his parents were having nice chats about cuts of meat.  Fast forward around 20 years and James is back in his childhood stomping ground of Hampshire and Dorset.  

And as Group Chef Director of THE PIG, he makes sure that all the restaurants source their ingredients either from their own kitchen gardens or from producers within a 25 mile radius.  That includes beautiful cuts of meat, which James turns into British charcuterie with – wait for it – Mr Bartlett’s son!   

Passion has definitely replaced boyhood boredom, as you’ll hear…

Episode 26 Pete Joy
Bakehouse 24

For someone who had no business plan, but thought he’d be alright because there was a Waitrose round the corner, Pete Joy, at Bakehouse 24 is doing pretty well.

Pete’s love of mixing and kneading emerged out of the blue, one night, when his housemates were at band practice. Having the place to himself, he decided not to do a normal thing like ordering Chinese, but to make a cake instead. This wasn’t a one-off: Pete soon developed a serious baking habit, which led to a 3am-to-midday job at a pioneering sourdough bakery under a Hackney railway arch.

In this episode you’ll hear how the man with no plan is successfully building a team of sourdough bakers (one of whom is also a potter) across two sites in Dorset…and why he gets a bit ranty on the topics of gluten intolerance and interpretations of the word ‘sourdough’…. You’ll probably sympathise by the end of the conversation. Enjoy.

Episode 12
James Whetlor – Cabrito Goats

Cabrito’s mission is to put all billy goats born in to the dairy industry into the meat industry. Ex-chef James Whetlor knew he could something about the plight of the male billy goats, who are historically euthanised at birth in the dairy industry.

James realised that goat meat had potential when his roast goat leg with lentils, salsa verde and chive flowers flew off the menu at the River Cottage Canteen around 8 years ago. Soon after, James sold his first kids to one of the Great British Chefs, Jeremy Lee at Quo Vadis. Since then his customer base has grown to include more award-winning restaurants… and with Goatober, he wants hundreds of other venues to include goat on the menu.

In fact, Cabrito has a global vision: to inspire every meat-eater – from Europe to India and Australia to America – to put goat meat on their shopping list at least once a month. Why don’t we do that now? As you’ll hear it’s down to a very strange quirk of history, which has led to millions of billies needlessly disappearing.

James is International Director of Goatober working with partners in America, Europe and Australia and is consultant for the European ‘Food Heroes’ project, which aims to end food waste in farming across the EU. James’ first book GOAT: Cooking and Eatinghas been widely acclaimed as genre-defining and is nominated for a James Beard award 2019.

This episode is a must listen.  Enjoy.