Chef Campbell Mickel is our 246th validated chef. His validation dinner took place on Saturday 6th June in Edinburgh.
As with every validation dinner, La Belle Assiette invited 8 guests to take part as the jury. Alright Treacle kindly hosted and an Edinburgh foodie crowd attended, including Edinburghlicious and Crumbs and Petals. Their role is to experience a private chef dining experience and evaluate the menu prepared by the chef.
Chef Campbell Mickel has been cooking professionally since he was 15. He did however start much younger. Born into the Hotel and Restaurant business, he was always trying to get the chefs to give him tasks. He is now in his 30th year as a chef. His love and enthusiasm is as strong today as it has always been. There is a real joy for him in taking a larder of raw produce and creating delicious food that friends, family and clients will enjoy and remember. Taking care with the purchasing. Hand selecting each langoustine, checking the age of the best beef, the marbling just so, smelling the fruit that will make the compote the sweetest. Having that interest in the best raw ingredients that makes the finished article sublime. That’s the love of cooking and entertaining.
Asparagus veloute with parmesan crisp.
18 year old Macallan marinated loin of salmon, crab claw bon bon, spaghetti of sweet red peppers, spiced chilli dressing
Herb crusted rack of black faced borders lamb, fondant potato, pea and spinach puree with pan jus
Rhubarb & custard. Rhubarb jelly, compote & crisp with a light aerated crème anglaise. Topped with honeycomb crunch.
Belgian chocolate truffles and raspberry meringue kisses with fresh coffee
Here are some of the reviews left by the jury:
« Campbell was an absolute professional and accommodating guest chef. He cooked classic dishes, which went down very well, and was great at communicating with guests throughout the meal. He clearly knows his stuff, and this was visible with his ability to produce high standard fare in the confines of our kitchen, with absolutely no fuss. We very much enjoyed hosting a dinner party without all the stresses of serving and cooking – all in all it was a successful evening. » Anna. H.
« It was a pleasure to try Campbell’s menu, from canapés straight through to the petit fours. The dishes offered a range of flavours and textures, each one interesting and delicious. I loved the punchy chilli dressing with the salmon, and the sweet pepper spaghetti balanced really well. The mustard on the herb crusted lamb gave them an extra lift, and the minted pea and spinach puree was fab. The honeycomb on the rhubarb and custard added great texture and fun. I enjoyed every element of every dish. Thank you! » Caroline. S.
« Campbell delivered a sublime dining experience, with exceptional dishes, impeccable service and a brilliant manner. As a guest it was simply unmitigated pleasure to sit back and enjoy each course served. The menu was traditional yet bold – the level of spice in the chilli dressing for the salmon and crab starter evidence that there was no playing safe for Campbell. The cooking was of the highest quality one would expect from a private chef, served in an equally top-notch manner. But that’s not to imply any stuffiness or pomposity. It was lovely to talk to Campbell afterwards, to explore his menu choices and find out more about why he enjoys his work as a chef. Friendly and open, with the meal demonstrating his exceptional talent. I would have no hesitation in recommending Campbell as your next private chef with La Belle Assiette. » Harper. S.
Chef Campbell Mickel created a truly marvellous menu for all of the guests to enjoy. He rose to the challenge of producing a 5 course menu for 8 people in a very small kitchen. All the guests were stunned by the dishes that were produced, which could have easily have been from a 5 star restaurant. Campbell created dishes that were not only a treat for the tastebuds but also for the eyes, as each was presented beautifully with great attention to detail. Campbell not only created a menu that was pure joy to eat but also entertained the guest with his stories, set them at ease with his charming personality and was highly professional – not leaving a trace that he had been there before leaving. Therefore, the chef is labelled “validated by the jury”. Congratulations!