Forged in fire, cooking and dining in the wild.
By Liz Brewer
The ever-evolving dynamic film director, producer, screenwriter, creator and inventor, Guy Ritchie! How many more expanding strings can there be to this creative man’s bow?
I’m in my element with outside living and through my many sojourns in Africa, mainly exploring Zambia, was frequently lost along the Zambesi, having missed a confluence along the way and getting stuck on sandbanks in the middle of the river! So camping, cooking and eating outside are always an integral and exciting part of my life. Therefore, being invited to join Guy Ritchie and his enthusiastic team in his creation, the alfresco lifestyle WildKitchen on a lake at his Somerset Estate, Ashcombe, I knew it would not only be an adventure, but an enjoyable, novel and delicious experience – not to mention, safe and peaceful without any intruding hippos and hyenas!!
After a 10 minute drive from Ashcombe’s front gates, past his Gritchie Beer brewery, to the WildKitchen, I arrived at his impressive copper topped 12 seater WildTable, containing two ingenious fire boxes covered by clear lids, so you could witness the cooking, both burning wood or Charcoal and generating heat & light without smoke, as smoke is cleverly guided away through a flu, and all housed within his latest version of the WildTent (a necessary addition to protect against the unpredictable UK weather)
I was greeted by his jovial right hand man and General Manager of, Cashmere Caveman Co WildKitchen, Rich Millbank into Ritchie’s world of the Wild!! Then the Boss, as he was referred to, arrived.
Downing a welcome glass of wine, I marvelled at this ingenious sophisticated tent-based all-weather structure and the heat source, offering in one unit an ingenious range of cooking methods from steaming, baking, grilling, frying, smoking, slow roasting and even boiling!
Having seen Ritchie’s 2019 film ‘The Gentleman’ I was amused that product placement suitably made its mark on several occasions! Clever man!
The tasting menu was original and utterly delicious and showcased all elements of the WildKitchen. Every mouthful was a mouthwatering, delectable and memorable experience.
I particularly enjoyed Guy’s sense of humour! After finger-eating the succulent steak, he’d cooked to perfection, I asked if I could have a finger bowl. Without hesitation he reached up to the halo of tools hanging above for a suitable dish, and having added water he poured a tablespoonful or two of olive oil, explaining apparently t’was the necessary ingredient for a finger bowl. Who am I to argue?
The WildKitchen which includes the WildTent and WildTable is available in three options – Single, Double and commercial. The Double and commercial versions have a Chef’s Table, which allows guests to watch the theatre of open fire cooking, whilst comfortably sat at the main dining table. There are four versions of the WildTable (stand-alone units), seating between 4-12 pax, with each one able to keep you warm whilst offering a unique al-fresco cooking experience. Prices upon request.