The 'F' word does beer, and macaroni cheese with Stichelton
You know, I think the 'F word' is good for food, and even drink...
For those outside the UK, let me explain. The 'F word' is a national TV show in the UK that's the platform for celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay. It is fast-paced, popular and profane. But it is brilliantly done. Like Top Gear, the car program that appeals to people who have no interest in cars, the F word draws in viewers with little interest in what they put in their mouths. But, precisely because of this, it's a program that has the potential to get many people interested in real food.
Tonight, Gordon was brewing his own beer, with a view to matching it with food. What sort of beer? In an inspired choice, he chose to emulate Innis & Gunn's wonderful oak-aged beer that's aged in used Bourbon casks. [Aside: the C4 website repeatedly mispells this name as 'Inns and Gunn')
And then in his interpretation of Macaroni cheese he uses the fantastic Stichelton cheese. This is the Neal's Yard interpretation of Stilton, but made with unpasteurized milk, the way that the best Stiltons used to be made. Randolph Hodgson found that in recreating the classic style, he was unable to use the Stilton name - by law, Stilton now has to be made with pasteurized milk. But his Stichelton, still a work in progress, is better than any Stilton.
I reckon Gordon has some very good researchers indeed. It's kind of ironic, though, that a show devoted to redicovering and promoting the best of all that is edible is sponsored by Gallo. I guess that shows that wine has a bit of a mountain to climb.