“Never meet your heroes” I always remember being told that by a sport journalist I worked closely with a few years ago “you will only be disappointed”.
I was not disappointed when I met Jamie Oliver, he was exactly the sort of person I thought he was, professional, considerate, genuine and all round nice bloke. Listening to Jamie and his interview with DN’s Pia Gripenberg I was surprised to learn how this once young chef now employs some 3,000 people in his businesses across the UK and some 2,000 abroad. Impressive.
We met Jamie to cover a story about the first Jamie’s Italian that was to open in Sweden (Stockholm).
It was in a vibrant working area in a converted warehouse in north London where I took his portrait, it was the kind of place where you immediately felt at home. One half was an open plan office the other half was a TV studio which shared space with his working kitchen where 2 chefs were fixing dishes that were being photographed by a photographer who sat on a large window ledge and used diffused daylight as his only light source – simple but effective.
In between these 2 area’s was a seating area where I rearranged some furniture and put a colourful green cabinet against a wall, Jamie sat on top of the cabinet and I took his portrait, also simple, I felt it worked.
On leaving Jamie gave kindly me a copy of his new cookbook Comfort Food – on page 114 I find a recipe ‘Happiness Is A Bacon Sarnie’. It sure is.