Vincents still has the same chefs, same waiters, same farmers, and same premises as it has had over the many, many years we have been here. 17 in total. Although nearly a third of my life has been spent as head chef, I still consider myself to be a spring chicken. Every week, as I sit down with my staff to prepare the menus and check out the seasonal fresh produce on offer, I think it just can't get any better than this. But of course it does. The summer months bring one luscious treat after another.
Right after we have bid a fond farewell to the asparagus season, strawberries ripen, and now tomato time is here. I don't mean those nasty orange round balls encased in plastic and sold by the supermarkets all over the world, all year round. No! What I'm looking forward to are big, robust juicy local tomatoes.
I like my tomatoes exactly as I like my women. They have to be plump and round with interesting dimples and a fascinating fragrance. And for this, we need heirloom tomatoes. Tomatoes grown from pure seeds, handed down from generation to generation, not grown from genetically modified, hybrid seeds. They need to have been grown and ripened in the sun to develop their heavenly taste and texture.
Apart from the heirloom tomatoes, apart from the wild herbs which adorn our menu, apart from the organic strawberries, raspberries, gooseberries, we also want to announce something very, very new - namely, a new web page.
A web page that is up to date in every way, menus, recipes, words of wisdom, pictures of my guests and my staff. And if you happened to miss one of my TV shows, it's all here on the web. I will be introducing you to my staff one by one as I believe it's important for you to know who is serving and cooking for you. Have you ever met Mr. McDonald? Mr. Pringles? Mrs. Cheetos?
When I was in Tel Aviv I watched their top chef, Eyal Shani, make a delightfully simple yet stunning tomato recipe. As he worked, he said: '"Where there is a tomato, there is the sun, where there is the sun, there is life."' and that summed up the beauty of the dish he prepared. This week, I will be creating my own version of his Tomato Carpaccio served with Planetta olive oil ice cream and wild thyme. It's unbelievably good.
Chef Martins Ritins