Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Raymond Blanc at Whaca and the SRA


Emerging from the bowels of London into the dizzying streets of Canary Wharf, all signs of sun and blue sky had disappeared. Dark, thick clouds rolled threateningly through the sky releasing their first fat drops on all the hard-pressed senior executives who were standing around busily smoking cigarettes and hitting on their secretaries.

So why am I here? Raymond Blanc had emerged from the depths of Oxfordshire to cook at the Wahaca Street Kitchen Van Thing in Canary Wharf with Thomasina Miers. The reason for the appearance of the French star was chiefly to promote the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), of which he is the newly crowned president.

Food connects our landscape, our soil, our heritage, our health and what kind of society we are creating for tomorrow”, said Raymond in his letter to diners. “Chefs, restaurateurs, and consumers can make the difference by embracing these values and in doing so create a better food chain.”

Finally finding the Street Kitchen, squashed in a corner of Canada Square Park, I approached a small huddle of people surrounding the beautiful chrome bus. The majority were photographers and SRA people. I spoke for a while to a very friendly woman from the association, whilst watching the Raymond and Tommi serving out burritos. Raymond, as ever, was very vocal, bubbly and generally friendly.

When it came to my turn to be served there were no burritos left. Raymond and Tommi were rushed out of the van for yet more photos. I headed back to the Tube amidst the thronging home-bound crowds of bankers, now finished with their cigarettes and secretaries. The things one will do for story, I thought. Except, I'm not really convinced there was one.

You can read a little more about Raymond here.

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