|Gino D'Acampo - celebrity chef and thoroughly nice chap|
I love kitchens. It might sound silly to somebody who doesn't know me, but I do. Whenever I go anywhere I can't help but notice worktops, cabinets, if the kitchen is country-style or minimalist chic, high-gloss or matt, knobs on or handleless; and the appliances also - make, style, material. It's the same with sinks and taps, both kitchen and bathroom, I look for the brand and try to recognise the model; I smile to myself when I get it right. You might think I need to get a life (and perhaps you're right), but I spend a lot of time writing about interiors, especially kitchens, which - I hope - explains my interest.
I was pleased to be invited to an evening reception at Poggenpohl's Wigmore Street store in London last week. I was surrounded by exquisite kitchens containing the most high-tech appliances, professional spray taps and deep, quality stainless steel sinks. Heaven. Obviously the only kitchens there were Poggenpohl, so I couldn't play my 'spot the brand' game, but there was lots of Champagne, live jazz, canapes ... and a cookery demonstration by a celebrity chef to keep everyone amused.
Gino D' Acampo was the chef in question and he was good. I hadn't watched him cook before and he just made the entire process look easy. Ok, he did homemade pizza, which isn't too complicated, but for someone who simply buys them in the shop and puts them in the oven I was impressed - homemade bread base and everything. I've already blogged about his pizza recipe here and it could become one of my signature dishes (I don't cook much and definitely nothing complicated, my other half is the cook in our house and he's excellent at it). Unfortunately Gino couldn't bake the pizzas as I believe the ovens were not wired up or something, but he put ona good show, inviting a couple of members of the audience to help him. He also did a book signing - I bought one of his books as the money raised was destined for charity - and I had my photograph taken with him. Don't know if I'm brave enough to put it up though, I'll have to think about that one.
It was also great catching up with colleagues and meeting people in the industry. And of course I got to play with the furniture - I just leaned against one cabinet and the drawer opened, soft close, no handles - wonderful.
|I'm not sure what kitchen this is but it is possibly the +Segmento by Poggenpohl|
|This is part of the +Integration design at Poggenpohl's Wigmore Street store|
|Storage is crucial in any kitchen and these deep drawers do not disappoint|
|Separate storage areas make finding contents a piece of cake and is such a practical idea|
|Okay, here it is. Me with Gino D'Acampo.|