Humans of Hospitality
Summary: Humans of Hospitality is a weekly podcast, showcasing stories and insights from the world of independent hospitality – the human beings rather than the big brands. You’ll hear from the producers of ingredients and the people who combine those ingredients to bring you new dishes and drinks… and the owners of the bars, cafés and restaurants who create memorable settings, so you recall your mouth-watering meals years later. They are the people who bring vibrancy to their corner of hospitality and, who, as a group, make all our lives richer and more interesting. If you want a world of formulaic and dull corporate sameness this is not the podcast for you. If you’d like to learn about amazing human beings who dedicate their lives to making the world more diverse for our daily enjoyment, please listen. Each week brings a new inspiring story. Through it you’ll learn about the challenges facing independent businesses in this sector, from excruciatingly tight profit margins to tackling competitors such as Deliveroo and UberEats. We are exploring hospitality in its broadest sense. Farming, politics, culture, cooking, nutrition, welfare, family, business, love and more. Wether you’re a famous figure or total unknown, if you love hospitality and have something important to say, chances are we’ll end up having a conversation. We want to explore the fair production of food, protecting the planet and humanity, whilst ideally tasting awesome. It’s going to be quite the adventurous conversation. In showcasing these stories, founder and presenter Mark Cribb, wants to tip the balance back in favour of independent businesses: “Where we spend our money genuinely makes a difference to the kind of world we live in. So let’s at least make our world interesting.”
Imagine. You’re about to open your first restaurant to the public. Your wife, who’s front of house, is 8 ½ months pregnant. You’re the chef –and you’ve never cooked professionally before. But you buy a couple of recipe books and some chef whites, and off you go. Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Yet this is what Alex Aitken did in 1983. It was the start of a Michelin-starred career which has evolved in incredible ways and is still going strong. Today, Alex is spreading his love of locally sourced food – whether foraged, fished or farmed –through a growing number of award-winning restaurants, carrying ‘The Jetty’ name. As you will hear, his passion for sourcing food sustainably harks back to his teenage years as a deck hand on North Sea trawlers. He’s got hair-raising tales of mistaking World War II mines for bumper catches… and a mischievous tale about why he likes fiddling with the music volume while you’re eating your meal in his hotel restaurants. It’s only a bit of fun… Enjoy Website https://www.thejetty.co.uk/alex/the-chef/ Twitter https://twitter.com/alexskitchen The post Episode 21 Alex Aitken <br> The Jetty and Michelin star chef appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Michael and Joy Michaud at Sea Spring Seeds are chilli growing experts who took the world by surprise one April 1st, when they revealed they’d developed the world’s hottest chilli plant, the Dorset Naga. It wasn’t an April fool, even though it seemed absurd that this world record-breaking chilli had been reared in a lush, damp corner of Dorset, far removed from its original Bangladeshi home. The patience and dedication it takes to develop a unique and world first type of chilli was a real eye opener. The Dorset Naga is just one of many wonderful chillis grown by the couple – along with a wide range of vegetable seeds, carefully selected for their productivity and flavour, like the tender sweet roots of the Primo carrot! In this programme I get some great chilli-culinary tips from Joy… as well as an insight into the huge dedication and patience that goes into creating those tiny miracles: seeds…. website https://www.seaspringseeds.co.uk Nigel the HUGE chilli plant https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Bm93RBvMfc The post Episode 20 Joy Michaud <br> Sea Spring Seeds appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
When it comes to chocolatier-patissiers, William Curley is a world-class player. He’s one of only 7 chefs in the UK to have achieved ‘Master of Culinary Arts’. The chance to earn this accolade – which is the culinary equivalent of a Nobel Prize – only comes round every 4 years…and it took William three attempts. Gruelling, as you’ll hear… Perhaps it’s not surprising that William has done so brilliantly. As well as having natural talent, he’s fostered that talent by working with the best, from the moment he became an apprentice at Gleneagles, followed by stints with acclaimed chefs such as Pierre Koffmann, Anton Edelmann, Raymond Blanc and Marco Pierre White. You might think that working with big personalities and big brands (Harrods, Claridges, The Savoy …I could go on) would have gone to his head. Not a bit of it. As you’ll hear, William is delightful, down-to-earth and humbled by the fact he was able to crowd-fund his latest venture: his own shop in the heart of Soho. This means he can continue to be hands-on, creating amazing chocolates and chocolate patisserie. Be warned, your mouth will water during the course of this conversation… Enjoy. website: https://www.williamcurley.co.uk instagram: https://www.instagram.com/williamcurley/ twitter: https://twitter.com/William_Curley facebook: https://www.facebook.com/William-Curley-156913156249/ The post Episode 19 William Curley <br> Searcys, Harrods, Claridges + appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
British wine use to have a reputation, but not one we wanted. Now it’s taking on the French at their own game with some of the best sparkling in the world. As chair of Wine GB and founder of Hattingley Valley Simon is the perfect guest to chat to to find out why and how. If you’d said to Simon Robinson in 2008 that his Hattingley Valley vineyards would have the capacity – in a really good year – to produce 580,000 bottles of wine…or that his sparkling rose would be crowned a world champion, he would have said you were crackers. And yet, in just over a decade, Hattingley and other GB newcomers have done brilliantly in what is a very old industry…even though in the early days our efforts were written off as being poor copies of German varieties like Riesling and Muller-Thergau. In this conversation you’ll discover why our sparkling wines are now doing so well and why Simon calls his sector ‘agriculture on steroids’: it will make your eyes water when you do and you’ll wonder why on earth he gave up his partner position at a city law firm to go on such a rollercoaster… website https://www.hattingleyvalley.com instagram https://www.instagram.com/hattingleywines/ The post Episode 18 Simon Robinson <br> Hattingley Sparkling Wine appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Michael Stoate is a fifth generation miller in Dorset, whose family have been producing stoneground flour since 1832. That means he knows a lot about flour. It was the era when sailing ketches would carry the flour across the Severn to Swansea and return with coal for the mills. As a teenager he thought he’d be an engineer but he had so much fun getting his hands dirty in the holidays he couldn’t help but join the family business. In this conversation you’ll learn about the wonder of wheat germ – the embryo of life, which gives bread its gorgeous flavour – and what really happens to it in modern mechanised milling… That might help you work out how bread now can last for days, but when you were a kid, or in France, it lasted just a few hours. And you’ll see how Michael has adapted to the ever-changing bread scene: from the lows of the late 80s and 90s, when his whole-food shop market disappeared to brighter times, with our growing interest in continental breads, artisanal baking and sourdough. I learnt a lot, and I hope you do too. Enjoy x website https://stoatesflour.co.uk The post Episode 17 Michael Stoates <br> Stoate and Sons traditional miller appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
When David Richards was made redundant from his sales director role, finding a new one at 50 was very hard. Luckily, he had always loved cooking and smoking cuts of meat in the garden, so when his wife Karen suggested that there might be a business in curing, they gave it a shot. 10 years later their company, Capreolus, has won countless awards for its ever-increasing range of mouth-watering charcuterie and smoked foods, from pancetta and air-dried pork loin to the magnificently named Rampisham Tingler Salami. In this edition you’ll discover why it’s so important to get the right sort of business funding – if you can; why the fat of rare breed animals is the star of good charcuterie… and what it’s like dealing with restaurant food crazes, where smoked venison might suddenly replace air-dried beef, and you realise, with a sinking heart, that you have no venison on the premises and a six month lead time… The post Episode 16 Karen Richards <br>Capreolus Charcuterie appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
In terms of career variety, I doubt if many can match Nick Leach’s 4 decades in hospitality. One of his first jobs was working as the King of Saudi Arabia’s personal chef on a £9 million motor yacht. After that he found himself ‘catering to excess’, for merchant bankers in London, where £25,000 a week was set aside for caviar alone – served in huge swan ice carvings. This was in stark contrast to his next role as General Manager at Kings College Hospital, where his daily budget per patient was £1.76 – and that had to cover 7 hot drinks a day, in addition to breakfast, lunch and dinner. For the last 18 years he’s been drawing on this wealth experience to manage the catering at the University of Portsmouth. In any one week he has a potential 29,000 hungry students and staff to feed…and he still makes time to take his chefs to see local food producers – from the organic dairy and flour mill to the free-range chicken farm. Amazing man, amazing stories. Enjoy! The post Episode 15 Nick Leach <br> Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
In 1910 Ceri Cryer’s great-grandfather established the country’s first ever pedigree Friesian herd of cows, in a beautiful corner of Wiltshire. A hundred years later, Ceri is doing her family’s farming history proud: the Friesian descendants produce the milk which Ceri turns into award-winning cheeses – from the traditional Wiltshire Loaf to newcomers, such as the oozilyunctiuous Royal Bassett Blue. In this conversation we discover where Wiltshire cheeses feature in Jane Austin’s novels…and how each batch of Ceri’s cheese is influenced by a mind-blowing number of factors, starting from the herbs her cows nibble in the fields… That’s in addition to exploring the real cost of milk and yoghurt, and why Ceri is unlikely to give you a discount, but her husband Chad might … Plus you’ll get Ceri’s top tips on how not to waste a crumb of food. This includes feeding leftover home-made mead to the pigs, with some interesting results…. Enjoy the conversation Website http://www.brinkworthdairy.co.uk/ Instagram https://www.instagram.com/brinkworth_dairy/ The post Episode 14 <br> Ceri Cryer – Brinkworth Dairy appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Travel is what makes Barefaced Brewing tick: Nick Horne and Tom Cooper have been friends since they were 3. But in their 20s they were working in bars and breweries at opposite sides of the world – Tom in Edinburgh, Nick in Sydney. When Tom sent a Facebook message saying he was really keen to set up an indie brewery, Nick flew across the globe a few days later, rocked up in the bar where Tom was working and said, ‘Let’s do it’. And they have. They choose their hops not only for their distinctive taste but because they conjure up the atmosphere of a particular place, from resinous and refreshing Canada to super-bold, tropical Australia. And trust me, they know their hops: they reckon they’ve each tasted 6,000 different beers over the last decade or so. Tough research, but someone has to do it… In this programme you’ll discover that the lads owe a lot to Tom’s super-patient mum and sussed grandfather… but (in the nicest possible way) slightly less to his dad…how they crowd-funded a mad dash to Italy and back… and how they have set up their partnership very neatly so, should they ever fall-out (hopefully not as childhood friends) their business will survive… web: https://www.barefacedbrewing.co.uk facebook: https://www.facebook.com/BarefacedBrewing/ instagram: https://www.instagram.com/barefaced_brewing/ twitter: https://twitter.com/BareBrew1ng The post Episode 13 <br> Nick and Tom – Barefaced Brewing appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Cabrito’s mission is to put all billy goats born in to the dairy industry into the meat industry. Ex-chef James Whetlor knew he could something about the plight of the male billy goats, who are historically euthanised at birth in the dairy industry. James realised that goat meat had potential when his roast goat leg with lentils, salsa verde and chive flowers flew off the menu at the River Cottage Canteen around 8 years ago. Soon after, James sold his first kids to one of the Great British Chefs, Jeremy Lee at Quo Vadis. Since then his customer base has grown to include more award-winning restaurants… and with Goatober, he wants hundreds of other venues to include goat on the menu. In fact, Cabrito has a global vision: to inspire every meat-eater – from Europe to India and Australia to America – to put goat meat on their shopping list at least once a month. Why don’t we do that now? As you’ll hear it’s down to a very strange quirk of history, which has led to millions of billies needlessly disappearing. James is International Director of Goatober working with partners in America, Europe, and Australia and is a consultant for the European ‘Food Heroes’ project, which aims to end food waste in farming across the EU. James’ first book GOAT: Cooking and Eating has been widely acclaimed as genre-defining and is nominated for a James Beard award 2019. This episode is a must listen. Enjoy. Website: https://cabrito.co.uk/ The post Episode 12 <br>James Whetlor – Cabrito Goats appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
For Emma Goss-Custard, baking without flour came naturally to her as a student in the 90s. She much preferred the luxurious texture and taste of cakes made from ground almonds and polenta. And she kept going – even when well-meaning friends said her approach of replacing wheat with premium ingredients would never work. People wanted cheap cakes with a long shelf-life, didn’t they? Luckily, her friends were wrong. In this conversation you’ll hear how Emma managed to win over customers like John Lewis and Harvey Nichols early on in her business career… and how, 20 years on, her gluten-free bakery Honeybuns, is still thriving, even though the cake world has become amazingly competitive. You’ll also learn how challenging it is to create dairy-free bakes that survive being jostled around in delivery vans…. And how Emma has turned old farm buildings into, arguably, the prettiest office-spaces in the UK. It’s like walking into a fairy land, with bunting and twinkly lights. That’s where you join us now… Website: https://www.honeybuns.co.uk Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/HoneybunsBakery Twitter: https://twitter.com/HoneybunsBakery Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/honeybunsbakery/ The post Episode 11 <br> Emma Goss-Custard – Honeybuns appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Oli Perron, founder of Lunch’d, which delivers beautifully put-together salads, stroganoffs, stir-fries and more to your office…. Zingy, punchy flavours packed into a handy box. Hear how the early days were, in his words, ‘a bit of a car crash’, preparing 65 lunches in the kitchen which he shared with his long-suffering flatmate, Tom… AND he was having problems paying the rent. Find out how he survived that car crash: he’s now successfully delivered 24,000 lunches. He is confident that people love his food enough to subscribe to his lunchboxes… and that he can give Uber Eats and Deliveroo a run for their money. Website https://lunchd.co.uk Facebook https://www.facebook.com/lunchdorset/ Twitter https://twitter.com/lunchdorset The post Episode Ten<br>Oli Perron – Lunch’d appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Teenage memories of choosing individual mouth-watering chocolates in Belgium, France and Holland are behind Claire Burnet’s jokey suggestion that she and her husband Andy leave their London jobs and make chocolates in Dorset instead. Soon after, they’d converted a small hairdressing salon in Swanage into a chocolate kitchen, complete with viewing window… and a tiny shop upstairs. Yes, that’s right: upstairs! It was 2002, and Chococo found itself in the vanguard of pioneering chocolate makers: only using fresh ingredients from local producers and sourcing chocolate with a clear provenance from countries like Madagascar, Venezuela and Grenada. Find out why Claire and Andy use Raisetrade chocolate (it’s different to Fairtrade) … and how the mantra ‘spend a little, learn a lot’ has helped the couple grow their business from that tiny kitchen to four buzzing Chocolate Houses in Hampshire, Devon and Sussex, as well as Dorset… Find out more https://www.chococo.co.uk Facebook https://www.facebook.com/ChococoChocolates/ Twitter https://twitter.com/chococotweet The post Episode Nine<br>Claire Burnet – Chococo appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
When Giles and his wife Annie took a late gap year and went on a 38,000 mile motorbike trip round the Mediterranean basin, they had no idea it would be the start of a successful business. 26 years later, Olives Et Al has created 400 products and they still use recipes given to them by the families they met on that original trip: generations of history that span 6000 years, harvesting olives from trees that are two and a half thousand years old. As we chat you’ll discover why it’s a good idea not to tick off a customer when they dip their fingers into your olive taster bowl, why our attitudes towards food quality would do well to mirror our attitudes to luxury cars and the importance of how you exit your car at the office! Find out more https://www.olivesetal.co.uk or here https://www.facebook.com/olivesetal/ The post Episode Eight<br> Giles Henschel – Olives Et Al appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.
Find out why looking at a builder’s backside was the catalyst that led to Jimmy’s version of iced coffee, now stocked in pretty much every UK supermarket… and with its sights set much further afield, including Ireland, Sweden and Dubai. Hear the crazy things Jimmy does to spread the word about his drink, including talking to audiences of 300, dressed as a carton… and orchestrating what’s known as a ‘massive activation’ at a mainline railway station. (Sounds like a security alert, but actually it’s a neat way to promote your products). Find out how he felt about stepping away from the role of MD, and handing it over to someone who hadn’t seen his company grow up… Find out more https://www.jimmysicedcoffee.com The post Episode Seven<br>Jimmy Cregan – Jimmy’s Iced Coffee appeared first on Humans Of Hospitality.