Belfast Telegraph

Chef Blanc hails 'remarkable' Berry

Celebrity chef Raymond Blanc has hailed Mary Berry, saying the recent high-profile success the Great British Bake Off star has achieved is "remarkable".

Blanc, 65, whose culinary empire includes the double Michelin-starred Le Manoir Aux Quat'Saisons in Oxfordshire, said the 80-year-old baker, food writer, and TV show judge was "delightful to watch".

The renowned restaurateur told the Mail on Sunday the Great British Bake Off was the last television show he loved, saying: "Mary Berry is the most gorgeous lady in town and delightful to watch. To achieve what she does at her age is remarkable."

Frenchman Blanc, who stars in a new BBC food show, Kew On A Plate, was involved in a Twitter storm over the Great British Bake Off in 2013.

He posted messages suggesting losing finalist Ruby Tandoh was "so thin" that he doubted her love of food, and also criticised her on-screen tears.

He told the MoS today that if he could edit his life he would remove an incident where he had his jaw broken by a chef in France, who hit him with a frying pan after he suggested a sauce was too salty.

But the incident, in his home town of Besancon, in eastern France, led him to move to England in 1972, where he started his career as a waiter in the Rose Revived Restaurant in Oxfordshire, taking over kitchen duties when the chef became ill. He opened his first restaurant in 1977.

Asked by the paper's magazine what his worst trait was, he said: "I'm a Frenchman and I can still be impatient, judgemental and dramatic."

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