It’s funny when you meet somebody with similar interests to yourself. At first it’s an idea that you might like something a bit, but you pay it no attention, and then you bump into a couple of lads who share the same idea. And all of a sudden, it’s become a passion, an obsession. That’s what happened one night in London, after a meal and vast quantities of booze. Now, I spend at least $100 a month on Amazon, reading about Brillat-Savarin, Heston Blumenthal, Larousse G, Careme, Escoffier, Herve This, Freres Troisgros, biographies of famous chefs, marveling at their culinary journies and depth of knowledge on a subject forever expanding. Perhaps that’s what I like about it so much. It’s very personal. Nobody’s wrong. Nothing EVER tastes the same. The kitchen is the centre of my Universe. I love it there – it’s warm, it’s where food comes from, and it’s where families and friends eat together. Eating should be fun. Eating should be love. One should always drink when eating. That’s what we want.
I do remember the trip to the French House, (see Singapore Sid, Jun 2006) but my first memory of us cooking together, and really stretching ourselves technically (or in terms of ingredients) was at Matt’s gaff in Clapham. I tried my arm at roast rabbit wrapped in bacon. The oven was fucked, and the rabbit woefully undercooked when I pulled the bugger out, so we threw the bacon away, uncurled the little fella and roasted him flat in the pan with an onion and mustard cream. And then tore the roast beast apart at the table with our fingers, like starving Barbarians. I can also clearly remember Sid’s sautéed scallops and prawn in lemon sauce with rocket. Tremendous. And Matt made an oyster soup from Larousse. And somebody made duck liver pate…..I can’t recall who. It was all good.
I was saddened by my loss when I moved to New York. Not just the loss of the Thu Club, but sad that I wouldn’t see as much of the boys any more. Not just Sid and Matt, but all the others too – Shane and le Forge, Alex, Olivier, Simon, European Dave. I have been fortunate again to meet a couple of New Yorkers who share my passion. Clearly, there must be more of us than I thought. I have rekindled my own passion for the Thu Club and given it an international flavour. We are now London, New York and Singapore~! From such humble beginnings…..
Within these pages, you can track our Thu Club adventures in taste and technique, our forays into NY restaurant cuisine, new ingredients, our late-night boozathons on the Lower East Side, Park Slope and beyond. I hope you enjoy reading the stories as much as my fellow Thursday Clubbers enjoyed making them.
New York, June 2006