Occupy Blogosphere 38

I missed last week’s Occupy Blogosphere ~ but with good reason.

My daughter~in~law, Tracy, who is a brilliant Mum to Grace and works part~time as an administrator…

…is also studying to be a chef:


As part of the course, Tracy’s class has to work in Southampton’s City College restaurant, Aspire. So, last Wednesday evening I rushed home from work, changed into my glad~rags and caught a ferry over to the mainland, arriving just in time to enjoy the first four course meal that she designed and created from scratch, managing the kitchen in her role as Head Chef.

Here is the menu:



Without a shadow of doubt this was the best meal that I have eaten in any restaurant ~ and I’m not just saying that because the Chef is married to my son and owns a very sharp set of knives. Each dish was a delicate fusion of complimentary flavours, balanced and cooked to perfection.

I chose the smoked salmon pâté….

…the sea bass (which I’ve never tasted before)…

…and blueberry and elderflower millefeuille (with which Tracy won Masterchef Live last year ~ before she’d even started her formal training.)


I also sampled my son’s choices and those of others in our party ~ the only ‘constructive criticism’ that we could come up with was that portion sizes were very generous. Excellent value for diners, not so great for profit margins. As each course was served animated conversation gave way to an appreciative chorus of ‘mmmms’ and ‘wows’ and sighs of ecstasy (not just from me, either!)

Tracy’s meticulous forward planning certainly paid off. When a nervous trainee waiter spilled wine into a diner’s lap, then over all five meals being served to that table, the guests were moved and replacement dishes served within a few minutes. Although Tracy later confessed she’d assumed that the maitre d’ was joking when he asked for the entire order to be plated up again, she didn’t miss a beat and our meals were not delayed by this catastrophe on the other side of the restaurant. And when one good friend jokingly remarked that she didn’t like the apple sorbet palate cleanser, a raspberry one appeared within seconds. Our girl was definitely on the ball, fired up with adrenaline, doing something she loves and has long dreamed about.

As the waiters cleared the dessert plates and passed round petit fours, (hand~made to Tracy’s own recipes,) she came out of the kitchen to rousing cheers and applause, even from the lady who’d had wine tipped over her, hugs and kisses from her delighted family and a well~deserved beer from the bar.

By this time it was too late for me to travel back to The Island alone, so I stopped over ~ returning in time for work the following day. Which is why I missed writing a post last week ~ but it was so worth it!

Congratulations, Tracy, my darling daughter~in~law! You light up the culinary world with your passion and talent and I believe that one day soon you’ll set it on fire!

The Occupy Blogosphere movement was started by Amy, author of Souldipper’s Blog, to light up the Blogosphere with a shot of positive energy, each week. To read her most recent post ~ and for more information on how to join in, please click here: Soul Dipper


7 thoughts on “Occupy Blogosphere 38

  1. what a delightful meal you had! Sweet of you to share it here with us. Definitely a winner all around. Your pride and joy is a lovely thread running through this post. Of course, when I come to visit, I expect an opportunity to sample some of Tracy’s creations!!

  2. How nice to have had such a wonderful meal prepared by someone you love. I’m sure she really loved having you there to cheer her on. Culinary careers are tough, and the schooling can be grueling, so kudos to the chef! 🙂

  3. Oh how very very delightful … and festive event to usher in the Holidays … sounds utterly scrumptious … my mouth is watering. I miss my fine dining in New Orleans, now that my husband imported me to the “middle of nowhere”, Texas!! LOL …

    I also commend you for your zealous support of your daughter-in-law … it is heartwarming to have that support!! It means the world to daughter-in-laws!!! 😀

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