The opening of LARDO, our new pizza and charcuterie restaurant is only a day away now, and so we decided to say thank you to all those lovely people who’ve helped us get it this far in the best way we could think of – with beer and pork! It’s been a month of scrambling to get everything finished but we’re over the moon with how the space has turned out, and this was a chance to share it with everyone else.
Anyone who’s opened a restaurant will tell you exactly the same, but it really was down to the wire – we were busy polishing and cleaning and prodding the disco oven into life right up until the point when people started showing up. It didn’t seem to matter. Our brilliant staff kept everyone fed and watered despite being surrounded by our hungry and thirsty friends. We served our guests slices of our fennel pollen salami, and our chefs Damian and Christian sliced fatty porchetta between chunks of bread. The late stayers were treated to slices of lardo pizza. All of you lucky people will get a chance to sample this over the next week.
It seems slightly unreal actually – two years on from the start of our road trip around the USA, when the spark of the idea happened, and we’re finally there. During that trip, when we met a bunch of people who were making closer connections between the farmer and the chefs, it seemed like a logical step to try and create a project which does the same in London. Living in this neighbourhood, we’re constantly meeting folks who are making or baking or growing something fresh and tasty, and we hope to get lots of this locally grown produce into the food that we’re serving.
We open Monday 9th July – come down and say hello…you can book online on our Facebook page, or just drop in…
Some pictures from the party (more on Flickr):
It is an exciting time for our resident charcutier Matt Bedell, as he prepares for battle at the Young British Foodies final today.
The YBF’s :
“They’re the men and women using lost arts and new skills to bring craft back to the kitchen” HELL YES!
If ever there was an award for Matt’s passion for meat, then this would be the one.
I take this opportunity to wish Matt the very best of luck.
Break a leg x
We arrived at St.Briavels Castle in Lydney on Thursday, through the sunny hills of the Forest of Dean to be part of the launch of Native Breeds.
Graham & Ruth Waddington have been working tirelessly on building their new business, and after much success it was time to celebrate.
Guests included the lovely Kate Humble, and Kevin Gratton of Hix. I met with the jersey farmers of Saint Hill and The charming Maurice Trumper who supplies the Saddlebacks.
We ate a feast of meat that highlighted what such amazing makers they are – We are all in for a treat.
You can now buy monthly charcuterie boxes from them. Contact them on the link below.
Carl Warners book Food Landscapes is a delicious look into the world of food, but not in the plated variety – More Willy Wonka on meat acid. I can’t help but feel this one is a little ‘red riding hood’ but it could just be the tones..
Our current project wouldn’t be possible without the kind services and skills of Graham Waddington.
Graham has been at the leading edge of British made charcuterie for over 10 years.
Graham was one half of the fabulous Trealy Farm, and is now operating a smaller, more development lead operation called Native Breeds. We met Ruth at a market stall in the summer when it was bucketing rain from above in Bristol.
Cut to now, Graham’s almost alchemist mind has been a key part of developing a range of unique products – using a pig that is unusually fatty and also with a unique meat texture has lead us to look at the way we do things much more closely than if we had a run-of-the-mill pig. His experience has been an invaluable element to our making.
Our resident curer, Matt Bedell had a chat with us about the progress of our curing this week.
How fortuitous that the weekend of our Pig Adventure also coincided with Castellano’s All Things Pig Dinner in Bristol.
Also very lucky was that our Pig weekend also happened to be in and around the West Country, so an adventure up to Bristol – a very nice detour to make – wasn’t too far a trip. Continue reading