He’s was one of the most gifted (and volatile) chefs of his day but what do we really know about Marco Pierre White?
He collected three Michelin stars during his cooking career, changed the way the world thought about British food with his contemporary, gastro-pub style, and reduced hardnut Gordon Ramsay to a "blubbering wreck" (his words).
It’s the 25th anniversary of his groundbreaking book, White Heat, although the chef describes it as “not important”. He spoke to Observer Food Monthly and boy did we learn a lot about the chef with the rock star hair.
1. He never, ever asks if a customer enjoyed a dish
The chef banned his staff from asking that very question as there is no place for such an enquiry in fine dining, apparently.
Diners should be left to deliver the truth without prompting.
2. He ‘craves the ordinary’
This man with the mane of a rock star does no visit those trendy haunts. He calls this “conveyor belt cuisine” with “18 courses, and all of them tepid.” Harsh.
3. Dining out should last one hour
Marco likes to be in tucked up in bed by 10pm. Simples.
4. He won a Michelin star (well, three) without ever having visited France
“There’s part of me that wants to go. But I kind of like it being a dream. I’ve always been a romanticist.” Oh Marco.
5. His favourite dinner is a ham sandwich with English mustard and a cup of tea
This man knows how to live.
6. Filming for his television work is an ‘evil necessity’
Well, the chef, who retired from cooking in 1999, has to eat. Hello Knorr stock cubes.
7. Work was a ‘painkiller’
He told Observer Food Monthly: “It was where I hid. I was very young, and all of a sudden one day the world descended on me.”
Read the full interview in Observer Food Monthly or on theguardian.com.