Yes to shouty chefs

THE best thing about staying in a hotel is the breakfast, isn’t it? That lovely fry up that you wouldn’t dream of having at home.

I was staying at a hotel in Peterborough the other week and a nice young Eastern European waitress took my order after showing me to a table.

I sipped orange juice in a health-promoting sort of way as I waited for my fat-filled fried eggs and bacon to arrive.

A few minutes later I heard the chef shout from the kitchen: “Service!” No-one replied. The busy waitress didn’t say a word. Another shout of “Service!” came more loudly from the kitchen. Still no answer.

And it was at this point that I had to fight the urge to shout back: “Yes, Chef!” I suppose it was only then that I realised that I’ve been watching too many TV cookery programmes.

On television all the top chefs tell their underlings to answer them loudly in the affirmative. Maybe it was top shouter Gordon Ramsay who started it, but, whatever, they’re all at it now from Marco, Michel, Raymond - all of them. It’s obviously only Michelin-starred establishments that demand this.

So next time you’re dining out in style at The Pass at South Lodge Hotel, you can probably expect to hear a little more shouty stuff from the chefs. Well, in a refined, Horsham sort of style, no doubt.