What happens when you get chefs Tom Kerridge, Gregg Wallace, Nieves Barragan Mohacho, Neil Borthwick, Lisa Goodwin-Allen and more in a room with a bunch of leading food journalists? Not, on this occasion, a food fight but plenty of lively conversation.
We were there – team journo included Karen Barnes, Christine Hayes, Bob Granleese, Stefan Chomka and Allan Jenkins – to celebrate five years of the excellent Soho restaurant Sabor.
The latest round of UK Michelin stars had been announced the night before so there was some talk about whether the right people were recognised, and whether the awards still matter.
I had a fairly fiery exchange which was enjoyable but not suitable for print, which got me thinking about unguarded opinions. As part of a conversation between peers in loosely the same industry it’s fine, but if I wanted a quote for publication I would have probably gone through their PR.
Yes, it can take ages, which is not helpful on deadline, but it means what I hear is a measured response and not a comment someone might regret when it’s in black and white.
I know from talking to some PRs that they wish their clients didn’t pop up on social media, never mind voicing pointed views or giving away as-yet-unofficial news over a cocktail or three.
So please do what you can to help us get quotes from time-poor chefs and restaurateurs quickly whenever possible – it might just save some blushes!
What Lisa thinks…
“Goodness knows there were a lot of April Fool releases around this year… This one was quite obvious so I wasn’t sure whether the follow-up ‘mea culpa’ meets new idea really worked.”