Play it again, Sam 13 December 2019 Sam Harrison returns to the floor at Hammersmith’s Riverside Studios, where his brasserie is set to be a blockbuster
In this week's issue... Play it again, Sam Sam Harrison returns to the floor at Hammersmith’s Riverside Studios, where his brasserie is set to be a blockbuster
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Table talk

01 January 2000
Table talk

Don't push your luck - pullet

Chicken tonight has taken on a whole new meaning at the Royal Oak of Luxborough, near Exmoor in Devon.

It all started when the pub owner's labrador killed a neighbour's hens, mistaking them for pheasant.

To pacify the distraught villager, landlord Kevan Draper offered her a free meal at the pub. What was on the menu? Her chickens.

Someone else might open "wozn't"

Antony Worrall Thompson has already opened a restaurant in London called Woz. Now we are told his next venture will be called Wiz.

Wiz will be bigger and a bit more expensive than Woz was, says Wozza. Ever get the feeling he's taking the waz?

Yeah, but how many towels did he nick?

Living out of a suitcase was the kind of lifestyle Alan Edgington could not get enough of after he checked in at the Europa Hotel, near Gatwick in Sussex.

When the Devon sales director booked into the four-star hotel after joining a local car dealership, he only intended to use it as a short-term base. But Edgington liked it so much he ended up staying for three years, one month and eight days, clocking up a bill of more than £40,000 before checking out this month.

Table Talk wants to know whether this is a record, or are there any other hotels with guests who have been there longer than many of the staff?

Anyone care to set a maximum wage?

The forthcoming minimum wage will have no impact on Granada Group, chairman Gerry Robinson confidently told journalists at the company's interim results meeting last week. No kidding.

As Robinson also reminded the meeting, he tends to work an average 35 hours a week. Given his basic salary of £857,000 a year, I make that an hourly rate of £510.

But you can keep the dog-ends…

Dealing with petty theft from restaurant tables is a routine problem. Buy nice salt and pepper pots and you're not likely to keep them very long.

But one London Italian restaurant dealt neatly with this problem recently. A waiter saw an ashtray surreptitiously disappearing and simply added £10 to the bill under "miscellaneous". The customer queried the amount and was told firmly: "It's for the ashtray in your bag." It was promptly returned.

What do you think of it so far?

Sixty pensioners were not best pleased when they found they were sharing their holiday break in Paignton with the Institute of Waste Management's conference (known to aficionados as Shitcon).

Unfortunately, opposite the Orcades hotel, where the pensioners were staying, the Institute had set up a display of dustbin lorries, septic tank emptiers and portable toilets.

Doubtless the disposal of waste is a worthy occupation, but who would want their sea view blocked by waste disposal equipment?

The Birmingham OAPs were so incensed that they staged a demonstration, with one placard bearing the message: "Bin to Paignton."

Obviously a chef without pierre

Craggy-faced American actor Robert Duvall is a self-confessed food nut and, during a recent interview with London listings magazine Time Out, he kept straying off the subject of his latest film, preferring to discuss the merits of the capital's restaurants.

Duvall is, he revealed, keen to try the handiwork of "this Mark White, or whatever his name is".

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