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Tim Hayward

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Everything posted by Tim Hayward

  1. Gullet Verb - Modern Eng. To stuff a restaurant to the rafters, for its opening week, with members of an online community. Example "Can you get a table at Arbutus these days or is it still being gulleted? cf "Mongolian Clusterfuck"
  2. You're never truly alone with a carafe of Sauternes
  3. Or they can do away with tables altogether and serve it standing up in styrofoam. I think it's just one of those things we accepted as fashionable at the beginning and it's now too costly and complicated for the restaurateurs to go back. I reckon we should do away with soup bowls. A pool on the table and a straw should suffice. They probably do it that way at El Bulli anyway
  4. Aaaaaah. The crunch of ear cartilage. Took me back to school. Mud churned and frozen into knives. An oval of wet leather. A scrum of teenage schoolboys and Forster, the Ganymede of the Lower Sixth, with his hand up my shorts. Happy days
  5. I bloody well hope not. I can't stick this ridiculous business of breaking your bread up on the table top. Simple? Rustic? Bloody unhygienic and messy. If I'm eating the main course like a prince why should I eat the bread like a Carpathian village idiot? If they can't fit them on the table - get a bigger table. Restaurants are becoming like central London multi-storey carparks. They stick in so many extra spaces you can't reverse in and you can't open the sodding doors. GIVE US BACK OUR BASTARD SIDE PLATES!!!!!!!
  6. Full of bloody eGulleters by the sound of it. I had a great time. Thought the idea of serving an entire pig's face compressed into the size of a mars bar was inspired and that pieds et paquets (a similarly rich, gelatinous treat but from the other end of the pig) would form a perfect balance. I wasn't disappointed. I wish I still had a moustache to suck it out of. Wine was splendid, service charming. Could have done without the Teflon tablecloths which shift the entire setting every time you touch them. Oh, and Giles Coren. Spotted Battleofthebulge who, in a clever twist on the old red carnation trick, was wearing a table full of Canadians. Who else was there?
  7. Hell, I thought this was the Arbutus website.
  8. EVERYONE PLEASE BE EXTRA AWARE OF eG EVENTS POLICY If it looks like we're making dates here I'll have to cut off a very interesting thread. T
  9. Empowering civilians with access to their own mass media is truly a double edged sword
  10. It's an interesting question. I used to have a simple answer. a) There would be very little logical point in people lying about how bad a restaurant was. Particularly if there were many of them b) There would be a commercial point in a small number of people lying about how good a restaurant was c) Amateur reviewers tend to follow the herd if a restaurant has received good reviews. Therefore, generally bad reviews are trustworthy and generally good reviews should be investigated. Small numbers of good reviews are often fraudulent and I wouldn't patronise a place that had to lie to PR itself. Then I discovered online communities and I realised that I'd been naiive. People are brilliantly and undetectably good at sliding in a concealed PR puff and, in spite of what I wanted to believe about web people, were quite capable of nasty, paranoid little assassinations. What I meant by my previous, flippant comment, was that I now take everything I read on the web as unattributable unless I know the poster personally.
  11. Don't believe anything you read on the web
  12. I went a couple of weeks ago. It's certainly very competent and a great addition to the area now Odettes finally seems to have gone the way of all flesh. The downstairs dining room is a cramped, low ceilinged hell-hole unless you're on a seriously intense date (the couple at the table next to us began their evening by arguing about Brecht before agreeing vigorously about the role of corporal punishment in the bedroom - they left in a hurry and seemed unfazed by the surroundings). I had the stuffed quail which suffered a little from a sauce which either comprised canned demi-glace or had been brilliantly and subtly hand-made to emulate it. Upstairs was busy, airy and packed with people who look like your parents or possibly retired Company directors all bartling on about how splendid it was to have an authentic Italian in the neighbourhood. It's funny, we complain that there's a lack of decent local independent places in the 'Villages' outside of the West End then, when one opens it fills with the sort of people that live in those places. This is why the reputedly splendid restaurants of Clapham are an alien world to me. I would definitely go back but insist on the upstairs dining room. T
  13. A stallion races across the open fields. The wind picks up and in the distance we hear the insistant thump of a door banging against its frame in the breeze. A stableboy hurries to close it. Too late... ← ..Did, I, through some childish oversight in editing, neglect to mention the quite brilliant feature on pps 104-112? Who is that handsome stallion of a fellow? Note the nobility of his brow, the broad expanse of his open, friendly features, the reassuring solidity of frame and the general demeanour of forgiving good nature...
  14. The Ditte Isager shoot uses some terrific technique either in process, print or photoshop, to make the still lives look like washed out old polaroids. It's just gorgeous and nothing like the cover shot (I agree BTW) On balance I think that might come under the heading of 'career limiting moves'
  15. Compare and contrast... Current edition of Waitrose Food Illustrated (May 2006) Pages 40-45. Section on picnics. Heartbreakingly beautiful and totally original photography by Ditte Isager. I want to frame these and hang them in my kitchen to remind me why I cook. Current edition of Olive (June 2006) Page 87. Section on Jimmy Docherty, 'British Classics', Toad-in-the-hole. Admittedly not the most exciting thing to shoot but still no excuse for an overhead shot that looks like three unhealthy stools jammed into a decomposing Wonderloaf. Surley theres a point where fresh, honest realism fails to serve the purpose. In a shot like this the food looks poorly prepared, unstyled, unappetising and in this particular case, seems to be suffering either from soft focus or motion blur.
  16. So, just to be clear. Supper is the last meal of the day, as long as it's smaller than lunch, which might be dinner if you're pikey. Americans and Canadians from rural or possibly urban backgrounds can eat supper at any time of day they damn well want to, but they have to go to special camps to do it. Supper should include tea, bread, cheese, a kebab or cider, unless you're from Scotland when it may, or may not, contain fish (unless you're in C17th France). If you use the word 'supper' people will think you are either posh, not posh, pikey, Northern or a pedant with an extensive knowledge of references to eating in Chaucer. You should probably be upper class to have supper, or possibly middle class, or possibly a member of the lumpenproletariat trying to convince people that you are a Belgian aristocrat - unless you are a Scottish fish. Glad we've cleared that up then.
  17. 5 pints of Cider is not supper. ← Not even with ice in it?
  18. Won't wash with a three year old. Feed 'em anything that close to bedtime and you'll be up a four in the morning, wringing it out of the bedsheets
  19. You may have something there. My mother-in-law (Born Guildford, 60+, Cheltenham Ladies College) uses the word with shrill, tooth-loosening abandon while her husband (Born Edinburgh, grammar school, academic) would never let it pass his lips. The English upper classes have always been good at defining an impossibly arcane set of rules (see Duncan's posting further down the thread) just so the lower orders and the foreign can't understand (cf. Cricket) (Re. Common family. As you correctly aver, mine were a semi-criminal bunch of itinerant West Country criminals. I had to marry class )
  20. It must be. Down here we call that 'a kebab'.
  21. <RANTMODE> Yesterday, my three year old came home from school and had the temerity to refer to her bowl of 'wiggly pastas and red sauce' as 'supper'. I'm getting increasingly apoplectic about supper. It's a repulsive word, invariably delivered as a pervasive, toffy, nasal bray.... '...we're having a few friends over for SUPP - AAAAAH!' It sets my bloody teeth on edge. My family never had 'supper'. We had tea or dinner. There are a couple of theories about 'supper'... a) It refers to a meal that the servants can leave out before retiring, enabling the Master to pick at a collation on his return from an agreeable evening of buggering the underclasses. b) It is used by arrivistes, terrified that people might ovehear them using the word 'dinner' and mistakenly assume that they're referring to their luncheon like some mucky little member of the lower orders. Either way it bears very little relevance to contemporary life except as a blatant class signifier. Will somebody explain to me why anybody without a large household staff should ever use the word 'supper'? Will somebody explain before I'm forced to apply these electrodes to an innocent, curly-haired, three-year-old moppet? </RANTMODE>
  22. Freson's an interesting case. What's happened here is that a photographer has been given space to shoot just for the sake of the photography. This doesn't happen much any more. (Remember that the great portraiture was usually commissioned by magazines). Looking at the photography shelf, the only other books I can see that were commissioned in the same way as Freson's were the 70's - 80's glossy quasi-soft porn numbers... Guy Bordin, John Hedgecoe, Helmut Newton and latterly Bruce Weber. The basic idea is that people would pay for images of something lovely to look at and there are only a couple of abiding, widely appealling subject matters for that - Good looking people in their pants and food (I, personally, consider landscape, sport and animals to be minority special interests ). I can't help feeling that a photographically led book like 'Taste of France' was as much a product of its era as Newton's Big Women. Will we ever see its like again?
  23. Getting a photographic brief with a purpose - informative, instructional etc - makes for a better shot in my book. Pictures with a fundamental purpose of filling space or jollying up the page invariably come with one of those dreadful, slack, 'I don't quite have any ideas but I'lll know what I like when I see it' briefs. The only answer to a brief like that is to take the prevailing style of other magazines and copy it, thus perpetuating and, usually, exaggerating the style. One could even extend your argument to say that the current shallow DOF/natural light look has come about because food magazines have too little to say and too much space to fill. (BTW I totally agree on the Nose to Tail shots)
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