The Magic Ingredient - Celebrating a new season of good food and drink
Overseas Magazine, Issue 733
March - May 2023
The lengthening days and surging optimism of March feels like the perfect time to get enthused about food again. Christmas’s excesses are a vanishing memory and – in the northern hemisphere at least – the dwindling darkness turns our minds towards the ingredients that energise and inspire us at this time of year; bright spring greens ready to pile on plates; hedgerows and trees bursting both with blossom and the promise of fruits and berries to come in a few short weeks; wild garlic and spring mushrooms emerging in the woods; and if you’re in the southern hemisphere, then autumn and all its promise of indulgent, earthy flavours.
In preparation for a year of good eating, our in-house food experts at ROSL have been busy sourcing the best seasonal ingredients for our spring and summer menus; you can get a taste of the delectable ingredients used by Chef Elliot Plimmer on page 6, where I speak with some of our most interesting artisan producers to hear about the philosophy and practicalities behind sourcing and creating the produce used to supply the Club. From ethics-driven butchery to carbon-neutral cheese, a secret smokehouse reviving old traditions in London or the sixth-generation Bordeaux winemakers dedicated to quality, we’re sure you’ll agree that understanding the impeccable provenance behind the dishes in our 1910 Dining Room will make them taste even better.
Elsewhere, Abi Millar takes an in-depth look at the history of our ‘fifth taste’, umami and its influence on contemporary food trends from its storied beginnings in the East on page 10; Henry Jeffreys reflects on the meteoric rise of English wine – which is now challenging champagne for world-class fizz – on page 14; and Cindy Polemis presents a fascinating deep dive on food representations in art, and the hidden stories and messages they often have to share on page 22.
We also hear from Arts Curator Robin Footitt about his upcoming ROSL Exhibition showcasing the international artists we’ve platformed over the years on page 26, and Arts Manager Cerys Beesley updates us on her musical project with the Kenya National Youth Orchestra on page 34.
Wishing all of our members a bright and brilliant spring 2023, from all at ROSL.
- Rosie Allen, Overseas Editor