Food and Drink stage

The Food & Drink Stage will feature discussions with some of the world’s leading celebrity chefs about current and future trends including a wine tasting with the FT’s renowned columnist Jancis Robinson. This stage is hosted by Natalie Whittle, Associate Editor, FT Weekend

Natalie Whittle, Associate Editor, FT Weekend

Natalie Whittle, Associate Editor, FT Weekend

Sessions include:

11.00am – 11.45am | The Art of the Menu
Nicholas Lander traces the revolutionary roots of the menu in 18th-century France, and talks about its modern developments with chefs Skye Gyngell of Spring and Merlin Labron-Johnson of Portland & Clipstone, who explain how they write the perfect Friday evening and Saturday lunchtime menus

12.00pm – 12.45pm | Wild Cooking
River cottage group head chef Gill Meller demonstrates three seasonal recipes live on stage using the best autumnal produce from his Dorset home and Borough Market, London

1.00pm – 1.45pm | In the neighbourhood
Clare Smyth, former executive chef of Restaurant Gordon Ramsay, which has held 3 Michelin stars for 15 years, has just opened her own restaurant in Notting Hill. She is joined by a panel moderated by Natalie Whittle including Peter Prescott, of Prescott & Conran hotels and restaurants, Dan Keeling, co-founder of Noble Rot restaurant and wine bar in Bloomsbury, about the allure of the local restaurant and why it’s the smart choice for the modern restaurateur

2.00pm  – 2.45pm | The Culinary Journey
How adventure and exploration feed our appetites at home. With Caroline Eden, author of Samarkand: Recipes from Central Asia and the Caucasus, Sarit Packer and Itamar Srulovich of Honey & Co and Jill Norman, translator and editor who created the Penguin Cookery Library in the 1960s. Moderated by the BBC’s Back in Time For Dinner presenter and the FT’s History Cook columnist Polly Russell

3.00pm – 3.45pm | A Chef's Guide to Sherry
Chef Sam Clark, co-founder of Moro, which in 2017 celebrates its 20th year on London’s Exmouth Market, cooks 3 tapas dishes to eat with 3 different styles of sherry. He is joined by Arthur Voulgaris of Gonzalez Byass

4.00pm – 5.00pm | Voyage to Italy
Ruth Rogers talks to chef Rowley Leigh about 30 years of the River Cafe, joined on stage by her head chefs and co-authors Sian Wyn Owen and Joseph Trivelli

5.15pm – 6.15pm | Grape adventures
Jancis Robinson's
tutored wine tasting of off-piste grapes, such as the delicious but little-known white ‘nascetta’ variety from Piedmont   


The quality of the talks was outstanding. A wide range of subjects, with experts and excellent speakers every time. I left with my head buzzing with ideas.

The talks were very inspirational, especially Jancis Robinson.

Stage partner: