Too Many Critics London at Temper City
Chefs, critics and food industry professionals came together for one night to raise £19,255 for Action Against Hunger
Jul 16 2018
The event raised an incredible £19,255 to help support our programmes in nearly 50 countries worldwide
On Sunday 8th July we were proud to host our thirteenth Too Many Critics event in London. Five of London’s top food critics swapped their air-conditioned offices in the summer heat for the six-metre long open grill at Neil Rankin’s Temper City. Under the watchful gaze of a room full of chefs, restaurateurs, PR and food industry individuals the critics had to cook a meal for no less than 130 guests.
This year’s critics included some who have donned an apron for us before - Bill Knott, Joe Warwick, Adam Hyman and Tracey Macleod, as well as newcomer Hugh Thompson. As part of the 5 course meal, each critic was judged on a sauce they had created and prepared to be served alongside Temper’s tandoori chicken. The judges, a panel of esteemed chefs including Pascal Aussignac, Martin Morales, Tom Hunt, Omar Allibhoy, Paul A Young, Ravinder Bhogal and Merlin Labron-Johnson, weren’t going to go easy on them!
Luckily for the critics (and guests!) executive chef Neil Rankin was on hand to keep them in check. Neil has been an incredible supporter of Action Against Hunger for many years, supporting us at numerous events and co-hosting Too Many Chefs every year with Nick Gibson. Last year, Temper was also crowned Top New Individual Fundraiser for funds raised during the Love Food Give Food campaign.
Guests were treated to a glass of Champagne Taittinger on arrival alongside cocktails and canapes, before digging in to squid and samphire pakoras. Then came the tandoori chicken with 5 different sauces from each of the critics. Following this, the guests enjoyed a goat thali, and a chocolate and turmeric tote with pistachio ice cream for dessert. The meal ended with some delicious chocolates from Paul A Young.
Throughout the evening, our host, BBC Radio 2’s Nigel Barden, gauged opinions on the critics’ food from our chef judges, and after a vote from the guests and chefs, Tracey Macleod came out on top with her delicious chimichurri sauce!
Our Executive Director, Jean-Michel Grand presented Bill Knott with an award to thank him for his incredible 20 years of support. Bill initiated Action Against Hunger’s work with the food industry two decades ago, and throughout every year since, has worked tirelessly to raise funds. We also have to say a huge thank you to Bill for being the force behind two of our most important annual events – Too Many Critics and the Fine Wine Auction.
A live and silent auction ran throughout the evening, with guests having the chance to bid on exclusive prizes kindly donated by our supporters. For example, on offer was a Dartmouth adventure with Mitch Tonks - a day fishing or sailing with Mitch followed by a lunch prepared by him at The Seahorse and a stay at the beautiful Dart Marina hotel, and also an incredible dinner party at Paul A Young’s house cooked by the chocolatier himself.
Between courses Nick Gibson, owner of the Drapers Arms and a long-term supporter of Action Against Hunger, said a few heartfelt words about his dedication to the charity. Nick has completed several overseas challenges to raise funds and has seen first-hand the impact of Action Against Hunger’s work in the field. Nick will soon be taking part the Marathon du Médoc- a marathon that takes in the vineyards and chateaus of the Médoc region in southwest France, raising further funds for the charity.
We would like to say a huge thank you to our guests, chefs, critics and sponsors for the evening, we truly couldn’t do the work that we do around the world without your support –Thank you.
Pictures from the evening
Guests enjoy a glass of Champagne Taittinger on arrival
Tracey Macleod in action in the kitchen! She won the audience vote for best sauce!
Nigel Barden speaks to Hugh Thompson about his experience in the kitchen
The starter is served on the chef's table. Let's hope it goes down well!
Nigel speaks to Pascal Aussignac
Chef Ravinder Bhogal and her husban Nadeem chat to guests
Guests awaiting their first course
Paul A Young tells the room about his fantastic auction prize
Adam Hyman dishes up the dessert course
Nigel chats to Martin Morales, who hosted Too Many Critics at his restaurant Ceviche in 2016
The critics with Neil Rankin and Lynn from Champagne Taittinger