It was in Huddersfield that I had my first ever supperclub experience nearly three whole years ago. So it was good to be back in Kirklees to sample the wares of Huddersfield’s latest and most welcome addition to the supperclub circuit – Tallents’ Ten. Run by young chef Nat Tallents, people may recognise her from a short stint on Masterchef the Professionals or as lead chef at Mushroom Mina’s foraging supperclub. Nat is a self taught chef who started life as a waitress. Frustrated with just giving out food, she made the move to commis chef and within less than a year was head chef, having never cooked before!
Tallents Ten is an interesting and brave set up. Situated about 3 miles outside of Huddersfield centre it’s within easy access of the glorious Pennine countryside. Diners are all seated at a table that looks on to Nat’s cooking/prep and plating station. Nat is also a one woman show, doing all the cooking, cleaning and hosting herself. And all without a drop of sweat on her brow! I loved just being able to sit there and watch her meticulously plate up. We were encouraged to ask questions and you could tell that this in turn gave Nat some pleasure and confidence, which was great.
On arrival we were welcomed with fizz spiked with raspberry and a board of canapes that included chicken and sweetcorn veloute, cheese straws, palmiers and toasts with an orangey salsa.
Next we got to sit up at the ‘experiential’ dining table! Unfortunately one couple had pulled out at the last minute but this meant there was more room for the rest of us! First up was a starter of cauliflower soup served with a pickled cauliflower and Roquefort salad. Served atop a board it was beautifully presented. I quickly adorned my creamy soup with the sharp blue cheese and the pickled veg also added a lovely flavour and texture contrast. We had all opted for the paired wines and this was ‘La Grille Chenin Blanc’ a good deep white that could stand up well to the strong flavours and creaminess.
Our fish course had lots of exciting elements that Nat delicately plated up as we watched on. Smoked mackerel came with celeriac remoulade, crispy beetroot leaves, radish, cucumber and little spheres that popped shallot flavour into the mouth! A fun but also pretty dish. The wine for this was ‘Yali Merlot Rosé’ a lovely sweet and fruity wine to cut through the oily fish.
Next up was ox three ways! This included cheeks slowly braised; shredded tail meat and a gorgeous bonbon of lovingly pressed tongue. This came with spring onion mash, carrot puree, crispy onions and fennel. This was warming and comforting and was a perfect double act with an achingly warm ‘Alamos Argentinian Malbec’ (an amazing wine!!).
Our pre dessert was a surprise take on rice pudding. Cooked with coconut milk and topped with rich fig jam it quickly quietened any rice pudding haters! Our main dessert was a take on pears that included pannacotta and delicate bakewell tart. The bakewell was definitely my favourite element, full of sweet almondy goodness. The wine for this was ‘Elysium Muscat’ a very zingy take on a dessert wine.
Finally coffees were brought out accompanied by homemade chocolate spoons! following this we then all stayed to chat and finished up the remnants of wine… finally leaving at about 1am!
Our group of 8 was small but perfectly formed. Guests included students, cake makers, Gregg’s pasty security (!), and food bloggers. We chatted away like old friends and this is testament to the laid back and friendly environment Nat had created. Hats off to Nat for a very impressive evening, which I think she pulled off with grace and style. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – there’s no way I’d have diners in the kitchen at the Manor watching me and Susie swearing at each other! Although we’re getting better now
So…. do make the trip out to Huddersfield and pay Nat a visit. If you like good food, good wine and good company then this is the supperclub for you. We even got a hotel as it worked out much cheaper than trains and taxis. Nat is also available for private cheffing etc. So check out her website – http://www.nattallents.co.uk/