Matt Manning

Can’t cook, won’t cook, either way, the latest party pop-up when it comes to event extravagance is a private chef; and frankly, the secret to happy hosting.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not a dinner party host.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a bad cook; it’s that the stress of feeding my friends with a face resembling my beetroot starter while guzzling wine with oven gloves strapped to my hands is not how I want to spend my Saturday evening. Besides, the pressure makes me underperform and an unhappy a-type is no fun – especially at her own party!

Matt Manning

So instead of sweating onions, next time you plan a dinner party, allow Matt Manning and his youthful charm to take over your kitchen. He’s the only ‘One Ingredient’ you really need.

Matt ManningAn international Private Chef and creator of the One Ingredient dining experience (which in case you aren’t in the foody know is an interactive dinner experience that showcases the versatility of a single ingredient across five courses where guests get to recreate Matt’s dishes for themselves), Matt has some seriously sizzling stuff on the go.

The first being his carefully created menu for ‘The Crazy Horse’ – a new hearty pub on Bree Street owned by fellow Brits Tim Scudamore and Ryan Harrison, set to open in a couple of weeks’ time (watch this space).

The second being July’s One Ingredient bringing you the Beyoncé of Citrus – Blood Orange, Bouchard Finlayson’s boutique winery and Fable Mountain Vineyards at The Food Lab in Bree Street.

Matt ManningWe’re talking Crab Mayo, Miso, Blood Orange Feuille de Brick for Canapés, Yuzu Marinated Swordfish, Blood Orange Marmalade, Cucumber, Nori Cracker for Firsts, Ham Hock & Sausage Scotch Egg with Blood Orange, Pommery Mustard for Middles, Pan Roasted Duck Breast, Smoked Parsnip, Blood Orange Glazed Endive for Mains and Treacle Tart & Blood Orange Custard for Sweets. And at R725 a pop, including all food and wine I’d say, ‘don’t be daft, of course I’m doing it!’

All unsurprising for a man who perfected his trade in the kitchens of some of London’s finest restaurants, including the Michelin-starred Pétrus and Marcus Wareing, Alyn Williams, James Knappett, Bryn Williams and Gordon Ramsay – except he doesn’t swear.

Catering for a range of private events from special occasions to functions and corporate team-building, Matt’s guests can choose to be involved in the cooking process or sit back and relax. And each event is completely bespoke when it comes to both menus and moola!

I feel it’s safe to say this man is going places – fast – so get him to your table, soon.

Blood Orange menuThe next One Ingredient returns with the Blood Orange Menu on 30 June + 01 July

Where: The Food Lab, Bree Street

Cost: R725 p/p