Thursday, 25 September 2008
I really enjoy The Restaurant, a TV show where ambitious couples are whittled down each week until just one is left to run a restaurant with Raymond Blanc. Each week some of the couples (deemed weakest) go into a relegation zone, and three of them have 'The Challenge' to see who exits, or as Raymond calls it in his funny French way, 'Zeee Chhhhhallooonj'.
Tonight's challenge saw three couples catering and serving in an Oxford College (Oriel, Trinity and a third which I have forgotten!) It was a fun challenge and the right couple got busted (pretty poor show they put on - well the front of house man anyway).
Now I have to say that without getting into all that comment on the validity of 500 years' tradition and High and Low table (fine by me), I have eaten a handful of times at an Oxford College (Lincoln) when my bro' studied there as a post graduate. The building was fine, the table, crockery, painting, glasses, cutlery and smell were all terrific and ditto the sense of occasion and history, however, the food was PAP! Total blandness and in the unimaginative tradition of the British public school system, though that left me alive and okay at the end of my schooling.
It's a good show and though this might invite stick, it is smart and fresh because it assumes some interest and spark (and dare I say, intelligence?) in the audience and does not assume everyone is as dense as concrete.
Actually I recall Lincoln College, Oxford 1995 mostly for a bit of a snog with a fine woman (called Venetia) about whom I was stupid as arse to do nothing more in the weeks that followed. Eejit!