Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The most Christmassy programme ever?

I've watched Heston Blumenthal's Perfection series with mounting awe and childlike glee. This obviously isn't a cookery programme, it's an opportunity to watch the combination of artist, mad scientist, true English eccentric and shy little boy create something wonderful. Rarely has a programme captivated and left me as consistently open mouthed as this programme has.

The whole thing is utterly barmy. Of course it has it's critics, but they miss the point, this is not about conspicuous consumption, he's not telling us to head off to Oman to whittle Frankincense spoons for Christmas, he's making a piece of entertainment. His restaurant is about experience, it has the underlying philosophy that food is more than just taste, it is evocative and all the senses are involved.

That's why the programme works so well, because he takes you to the table through your TV. Watching that celebrity Christmas dinner party eat the meal was almost as good as eating it (atually I'm certain that's not true as it looked like a slightly otherworldly experience), their reactions were so pronounced and profound that you felt how good it was. It's rare I get all effusive, but I'm afraid good food always has done it for me, it's all about the atmosphere, this is the first programme probably since Floyd's that recreates that fabulous eating experince and you get it right through the screen.

Alright, I'll stop talking bollocks now.