Last weekend we went to Harvest at Alex’s… Initially lured by talk of good food plus talks and demonstrations by the likes of Mark Hix, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Jay Rayner and Alys Fowler, we thought Toast would fit in well.
So on Tuesday night we arrived late at night on site (a little delayed by the ’69 VW breaking down on the M4) and were greeted by the beautiful Oxfordshire countryside at Alex James’ farm.
We teamed up with Rocket to produce the Chef’s Table – a gorgeous place to dine and try a three course menu developed by Yotam Ottolenghi, Stevie Parle, Emily Watkins and Valentine Warner. The food was enjoyed in the surroundings of the Toast restaurant, with our house&home products providing a brilliant backdrop to such a fine meal. We ranged beeswax candles across the tables, planted a tin bath with herbs and marigolds, hung a curtain of cutlery against one wall, strung twig chandeliers from the roof and light bulbs from branches of beech trees… Every detail was perfect.
As evening rolled into night we moved to the music stage. Fat Freddy’s Drop being the highlight for the Toast team… hands down. Then afterwards the party moved backstage where Alex and his friends celebrated his wife’s birthday sitting around Toast firebowls wrapped up in our vintage blankets.
We even created a little piece of Toast in a boutique bell tent…. Crisp cotton sheets, blankets and soft reindeer skin to bury beneath, warm rugs underfoot, and storytelling under the light of a storm lantern…
The festival had a really laid back feel and there was lots to see over the weekend. Daylesford ran a cooking school, Charlie and Lola were there to entertain the kids, and there was fun fair that all could enjoy. It felt like a great village fete, only better!
So, next year, will Toast be at Harvest? With such wonderful food in such great surroundings, I do hope so. Do you?
Photographs by Jamie Stoker.