Cooking brings people together and being together whether in a virtual setting or within the rule six (depending on the restrictions you are currently facing…) has never been more important. This month Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saison hosted us for a cooking experience live from their beautiful cookery school which is located in picturesque countryside in a 15th-century manor in Oxfordshire.
Created by celebrated chef Raymond Blanc OBE, Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons has been on our wish list to hold an event at for a while especially after experiencing what Belmond as a group offers we know that this is a special place for events for senior decision makers. The property includes:
· a luxury hotel with 32 rooms and suites;
· a two Michelin-star restaurant by Raymond Blanc OBE;
· a stunning kitchen garden, a Japanese garden, a mushroom valley, an orchard and much more;
· team building activities within Raymond Blanc’s Cookery School and Raymond Blanc’s Gardening School; and
· event space for up to 50 guests (subject current COVID-19 restrictions in place).
We started off the experience in advance of the evening itself by all attendees receiving a fabulous branded cooking apron, the list of ingredients required and a step-by-step guide to cook the dishes. After a giddy start of seeing each other for the first time in a few weeks, we kicked off the evening with an overview of what Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons can offer us from an events perspective in both a real life setting and in a virtual setting – which is a lot!! After working up an appetite from our virtual tour, we jumped straight in with cooking our delicious main course (fricassee of wild mushrooms) and dessert (chocolate mousse) being guided step by step, with lots of humour, by the experts in the cookery school. There were plenty of opportunities for us to ask questions and we were provided with lots of hints and tips (trade secrets!) from the chefs. The experience itself lasted for 90 minutes and we all couldn’t wait to tuck into the yummy dishes we had created. The only downside to a virtual cooking experience is that you have to do the washing up yourself! To keep memories alive from the event, after the evening itself all members received a signed cookbook from Raymond Blanc OBE in the post, it was such a special touch and something our members all loved.
To find out more about Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons and how they can help you with your event requirements, please reach out to Anna Brant who can talk you through their virtual and in-person offerings. They are offering a great seasonal virtual wreath making masterclass, we all need some Christmas joy this year!