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Obsession 18 – Digest

Posted in on 8th Feb 2018 by Northcote | Leave a comment

Obsession 18 in full swing.

In 2001, Nigel Haworth and Craig Bancroft created Obsession, an annual gastronomic event in which chefs from around the world take the reins in Northcote’s Michelin-star kitchen to create a celebration of great food and wine, and a meeting of friends, old and new. Now, in its 18th year, Obsession has just completed a monumental 18 nights, presenting some of the finest food and wines from across the globe.

This year showcased an extraordinary diversity of chefs, including hugely talented experts from India, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, Russia, Australia and Europe, plus some of the UK’s leading chefs, all creating the ultimate culinary experience. In total, 21 participating chefs travelled over 54,792 miles to the Northcote kitchen, nestled in Lancashire’s Ribble Valley.

Here we take a brief look at each of the Obsession 18 nights:

Day 1

Jason Atherton • The Social Company

London | New York | Hong Kong | Shanghai | Dubai | Sydney

1 Michelin Star (4)

Opening the festival, Atherton’s inventive style produced some stunning plates to set the standard for the next 17 days. His 17-strong worldwide restaurant group, The Social Company includes no less than 4 restaurants with a Michelin star. In addition to a Michelin star, Pollen Street Social has been awarded 5 AA Rosettes by the AA Guide, named The Good Food Guide’s Best New Restaurant and hailed the third best restaurant in the UK.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

006- Jason Atherton ( 18-01-18)


Day 2

Gary Usher • Sticky Walnut

Chester, UK

An empire built on sheer hard work, determination and crowdfunding, Sticky Walnut’s Gary Usher had every reason to smile on his Obsession debut. His passionate Twitter dialogues have won him more fans than enemies as he continues to gain acclaim from some of the country’s top food critics.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

014- Gary Usher (19-01-18)

CHARGRILLED OCTOPUS, Soy Field Mushroom, BBQ • Gary Usher

Day 3

Manish Mehrotra • Indian Accent

New York | New Delhi | London

Asia Top 50 (30) | World Top 100 (78)

Having trained under one of Indias’ top chefs Ananda Solomon, Mehrotra is often cited as one of the most exciting modern Indian chefs, expertly using spices to produce delicate flavour combinations and flavoursome dishes. His Indian Accent restaurants have won him spots in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants & S. Pellegrino’s Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants lists and now include the new Mayfair venture which opened in December 2017.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

008- Manish Mehrotra (20-01-18)


Day 4

Jean-Philippe Blondet • Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester


3 Michelin Stars

Inspired by the seasons, Alain Ducasse at The Dorchester’s executive chef oversees a brigade of over 20 chefs and the restaurant is one of only five in the UK to be awarded three Michelin stars. His Obsession menu included a dessert made Chocolate produced at their own manufacture in Paris.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

038- Jean_Philippe Blondet (21-01-18)

NATIVE LOBSTER, Celery & Homardine Sauce • Jean_Philippe Blondet

Day 5

Juan Amador • Amador’s Restaurant

Wien, Austria

2 Michelin Stars

Being one of the world’s best chefs isn’t an accolade that is easily attained, but Amador’s flawless mix of classic and contemporary cuisine inspired by his Spanish heritage achieves him this impressive status. His restaurant in North Vienna holds two Michelin stars. His Obsession dessert named after the Pink Floyd record ‘Brick in the Wall’ further reinforces his cool approach to creativity.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

031- Juan Amador (22-01-18)

CARABINERO, Parsley, Snail, Lardo • Juan Amador

Day 6

Lisa Goodwin-Allen • Northcote

Langho, Lancashire

1 Michelin Star

Our own Executive Head Chef took the opportunity to enjoy her first solo Obsession evening. Precise, tasty and stylish, her dishes always deliver on all fronts, and her modern take on a traditional Bramley Apple Pie was a real spectacle with flavours reminiscent of childhood, elevated to her usual high standards.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

022- Lisa Goodwin-Allen (23-01-18)

‘WARM’ BRAMLEY APPLE PIE, Nuts, Maple, Caramelised Milk • Lisa Goodwin-Allen

Day 7

Daniel Calvert • Belon

Hong Kong

A British-born chef who has clock up more air miles than most, Calvert’s cv includes London’s The Ivy, New York’s Per Se & Le Bristol in Paris. He now heads up the kitchen at Belon in Hong Kong where he creates dynamic & skilful dishes. It was a pleasure to welcome Calvert, who clocked up nearly 6,000 of the 54,792 miles travelled by our 2018 Obsession chefs to be with us this year.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

019- Daniel Calvert (24-01-18)

PIGEON PITHIVIER, Fig and Amaretto • Daniel Calvert

Day 8

Hiroshi Nakamichi & Tomoyuki Kon • Restaurant Molière

Sapporo, Japan

3 Michelin Stars

Delicate French plates probably aren’t the first images to come to mind for two Japanese chefs, but the three Michelin star Restaurant Molière in Hokkaido is esteemed for its classical French style. Nakamichi runs a string of restaurants in addition to Molière which include several one star establishments.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

013- Moliere _Japan (25-01-18)


Day 9

George Blogg • Gravetye Manor

West Hoathly, Sussex

1 Michelin Star

Gravetye Manor’s head chef is passionate and particular when it comes to choosing components for his menus. Roe Venison sourced from Gravetye’s sprawling 1,000 acre estate made the trip to Lancashire to feature on his menu which also included an inspired acorn custard dessert.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

027- George Blogg (26-01-18)

GRAVETYE ESTATE ROE VENISON Tuber Artichokes Mushroom & Pine • George Blogg

Day 10

Larry Jayasekara • Petrus


1 Michelin Star

Former National Chef of the Year 2016, Larry Jayasekara’s career has gone full circle. He started at Petrus in 2004, moving onto a string of Michelin star restaurants before returning to Petrus in its current location in Belgravia in 2015.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

029- Larry Jayasekara (27-01-18)

‘BLACK FOREST’, Kirsch Mousse, Amarena and Morello Cherry Sorbet • Larry Jayasekara

Day 11

Tom Kitchin • The Kitchin


1 Michelin Star

A regular face on tv cookery shows with a flagship restaurant which celebrates Scotland’s produce. His pretty ‘Rockpool’ starter was a symphony of coastal goodies including Mussels, Shrimp, Oyster, Clams, Squid, Lobster Claw, Crab & Sea Vegetables.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

003- Tom Kitchin (28-01-18)

ROCKPOOL, A rockpool of West Coast Shellfish, Sea Vegetables, Ginger and Newhaven Consommé • Tom Kitchin

Day 12

The Three Amigos: Diego Hernandez Baquedano • Francisco Ruano • Jorge Vallejo


World Top 50

A bustling & fun kitchen atmosphere as Mexico invaded Northcote for an upbeat evening of Latin American. Diego Hernandez-Baquedano, Francisco Ruano & Jorge Vallejo were as entertaining as they are passionate when cooking their signature dishes from the homeland. Mole Sauces and Habanero flavours spiced up the vibrant evening.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

006- Three Amigos (29-01-18)

OCTOPUS MOSAIC, Caviar Tapioca, Mussel Sauce • Jorge Vallejo

CURED SEABASS, Duck Fat, Poppy Seed and Salsa Verde Essence • Diego Hernandez-Baquedano

CURED SEABASS, Duck Fat, Poppy Seed and Salsa Verde Essence • Diego Hernandez-Baquedano



Day 13

Martin Milesi • Una


The creator of a unique single table dining concept could have been a daunting challenge for Martin Milesi, but the relaxed Argentinian took it in his stride, presenting six varied and interesting dishes from Classic Beef to root vegetables like Beets & Cassava cooked in edible soil.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

018- Martin Milesi (30-01-18)

BUTTERNUT WATER, Beans, Chorizo, Ravioli • Martin Milesi


Day 14

Jorge Vallejo • Quintonil


World Top 50 (22)

One of the Amigos went solo for another evening of Mexican delights. A regular in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants, Quintonil’s values are about clarity of flavour alongside contemporary technique, with a passion for sustainability.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

030- Jorge Vallejo (31-01-18)

SCALLOPS “VUELVE A LA VIDA”, Noisette Spices • Jorge Vallejo

Day 15

Tommy Banks • The Black Swan at Oldstead

York, North Yorkshire

1 Michelin Star

An eagerly anticipated evening with the aspiring cricketer turned chef at the helm of the kitchen. Banks created dishes inspired by those on the menu at his family run restaurant The Black Swan at Oldstead. Despite no formal training, he learned his craft in some of the finest kitchens in the country which led him to become one of the youngest British chefs to be awarded a Michelin star at 24.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

035- Tommy Banks (01-02-18)


Day 16

Berezutskiy Twins • Twins Garden

Moscow, Russia

World Top 100 (92)

The first time we have welcome Russian chefs to Obsession and they didn’t disappoint. Of the 124 dishes served throughout the festival, one of Sergey and Ivan’s stand out dishes was the Sturgeon with Died Spinal Cord ‘Fusilli’ & Pineapple Guava, with guests enjoying a taste of Russian food at its finest.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

026- Berezutskiy Twins (02-02-18)

LAMB RACK, HEMPSEED, Roasted Egg Plants • Berezutskiy Twins

Day 17

Nelly Robinson • nel. & Kirk Haworth • PLATES

Sydney Australia & London

Creative plant-based dining wouldn’t usually be a natural partner with Australian global-inspired cuisine, but when the two chefs are lifelong friends and both started their careers at Northcote, the blend could be nothing other than harmonious and exciting.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

031- Nelly & Kirk (03-02-18)

CELERIAC LASAGNE, Black Truffle, Hazelnut • Kirk Haworth

044- Nelly & Kirk (03-02-18)

WINTER LEAVES • Nelly Robinson

Day 18

Nigel Haworth • Northcote

Langho, Lancashire

1 Michelin Star

Closing the festival as always, our chef ambassador stepped up to the hotplate with a surprise guest chef, Gareth Ward, and of course Lisa Goodwin-Allen. Among the seven courses was Petrossian Oscietra Caviar, Orkney Scallop, Ward’s Welsh Wagyu Beef, & from over the border, Yorkshire Rhubarb, proving that amazing food can come from near and far.
> View all photos, video and menu of the night.

023- Nigel Haworth (04-02-18)

HAY BAKED GOOSNARGH CORN-FED CHICKEN, Fermented Cabbage, Morels • Nigel Haworth

Obsession 18 in numbers

3,800 Glasses of Champagne were enjoyed
124 Dishes were created by obsession chefs
1,942 Guests were entertained throughout the festival
13,432 Plates were served (& washed up after!)
94 Wines were served this year
18 Countries that the wines came from this year
135 Chefs have cooked at Obsession up to 2018
23 Countries represented by chefs since Obsession began
175 Total number of Obsession nights enjoyed since 2001


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