June 11, 2017

Chef’s Table Dinner with Private Chef Mark Heirs at Alexander House

In recent years, hiring a private chef to cook for your guests in your home has become popular. Companies, like La Belle Assiette, that offer private chefs services are growing rapidly and hiring a private chef is not a luxury anymore.

Who would not want to enjoy a beautifully prepared meal in their home without having to lift a finger? Being provided with the best gastronomic experience for your guests? The convenience of hiring a private chef, who will bring all the ingredients, plates and cutlery, cook for you and clean up afterwards, is a very attractive option for many people.  Hiring a private chef gives you a dining experience without compromise and menus can be tailored to all tastes and budgets.

Mark Heirs is a fine dining private chef available for hire.  Having grown up in the hospitality industry, Mark was always very passionate about food and becoming a chef was a natural path to take. Before he decided to become a private chef, Mark was mastering his cooking skills at some of the best restaurants and hotels in the UK, like One Devonshire Gardens, Gleneagles and The Fat Duck.

Mark always wanted to be at the top of his game, so as a young chef he moved to London to work in the kitchen at 3 Michelin star The Fat Duck, which was voted at that time the number one restaurant in the world. His ambition was growing with his skills and in 2008 he took part in the first series of BBC’s Masterchef The Professionals, where he managed to get to the quarter-final. After that Mark had several head chef positions as well as teaching at a leading cookery school.

Mark invited us to Alexander House, a charming remotely located self-catering country holiday house in Perthshire, that can be hired for private events. With breath-taking views in every direction – Alexander House is the perfect getaway holiday house. You can stay there from as little as £26.50 per person, per night

We arrived a bit earlier to take few photos of the set up and have a chat with Mark before the dinner.

My cooking style is very simple, I like to cook with the very best seasonal produce and let the ingredients speak for themselves. I put a great deal of effort into the sourcing of my ingredients. Provenance and seasonality are very important to me” – says Mark

What can you then expect from Mark’s cooking? The answer is everything! Mark likes to experiment with the ingredients and textures. He’s got a head full of ideas and he gets his inspiration from the best chefs in the world. So don’t expect a traditional meal, you’re going to be wowed and amazed by the combination of ingredients and modern techniques of cooking.

Mark has been trained by the best chefs in the industry and recently he spent some time under the tutelage of Martin Chiffers, who’s one of the top pastry chefs in the world and the man behind BBC’s Bake Off Creme de le Crème

One thing you probably did not know about Mark, is that he’s got a very impressive collection of extremely rare handmade Japanese Ito knives from Kin Knives.

Champagne reception before the dinner

Guests gathered around the fireplace and were offered a glass of champagne. Then we were ushered to the main room where we were seated at a beautifully set long table. Amongst the guests were leading food bloggers, including Gerry’s Kitchen and industry people, so the food chat was never ending!

First course was Buratta, Chestnut, Wild Garlic, Truffle paired with Graham Beck Brut NV

Buratta is is a fresh Italian cheese made from mozzarella and cream. Burrata means “buttered” in Italian. It resembles a huge ball of Mozzarella, but inside contains stracciatella and cream, that gives Burrata a very soft and gooey texture.

Buratta, Chestnut, Wild Garlic, Truffle

If you’re a lover of mozzarella, ricotta, or really anything that’s straight-up creamy, you would love this dish.

Graham Beck Brut NV

The second dish was Salmon, Gin, Cucumber, Crème Fraiche paired with Kuhlmann-Platz Riesling 2016

Arbikie Gin proves to be a gorgeous flavouring for salmon. The dish was bursting with flavour and the capers and lime relish added a fiery kick.

Salmon, Gin, Cucumber, Crème Fraiche

The third dish was Duck, Carrot, Squash, Pineapple paired with Errazuriz Valle de Aconcague Pinot Noir 2015

Duck has become more and more popular recently, and it’s no longer seen as a rare treat or a dinner party special. It’s been one of my favourites for a long time, with its rich meat and layer of lovely fat that delivers its deep flavours and a wonderful yielding texture, combined with crispy skin.

This dish, inspired by Chinese cuisine, was absolutely delicious and the duck was tender and flavoursome.

Duck, Carrot, Squash, Pineapple

Guests loved Errazuriz Valle de Aconcagua Pinot Noir 2015

The fourth dish was Goats Cheese, Choux, Apple paired with De Bortilli Botrytis Semillion 2013

Goats Cheese, Choux, Apple

These tasty choux pastry puffs were filled with a delicious creamy goat’s cheese and garnished with apple sticks.

 

The fifth dish was Strawberry, Cooked Cream, Basil paired with Langlois Cremant de Loire Rose NV

The strawberries and basil complimented each other extremely well, and the flavours collided to create an unmistakable and irresistible treat. I loved the rich flavour and creamy smooth texture from the cooked milk.

Strawberry, Cooked Cream, Basil

The dessert was Chocolate, Blackberry, Stout paired with Royal Tokaji Late Harvest 2015. Chocolate is my ultimate guilty pleasure and I was looking forward to this particular dessert.  Mark described the dish at ‘80% chocolate’. The indulgent layered pudding consisted of three tier chocolate delice, chocolate and Guinness ganache, blackberry puree, fresh and candied blackberries, and was topped off with a grating of 100% Peruvian black cocoa. I cannot see any better way to finish a fantastic meal.

Chocolate, Blackberry, Stout

All wines:   Kuhlmann-Platz Riesling 2016; Langlois Cremant de Loire Rose NV; Royal Tokaji Late Harvest 2015,   Graham Beck Brut NV; Errazuriz Valle de Aconcague Pinot Noir 2015; De Bortilli Botrytis Semillion 2013

The dinner was a roaring success and Mark is planning to organise Chef’s Table dinners once a month, so keep an eye on his website and social media as spaces are limited and they tend to sell out.

 

http://markheirs.com

0178 644 0022

mark@markheirs.com

5, 9 Munro Rd, Stirling FK7 7XQ

 

http://www.alexanderhousescotland.com

 

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