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Try a private chef

La Belle Assiette offers 600+ private chefs you can book based on location, price, cuisine and reviews

black plate cooked cod piece green curry sauce fennel rings white dust sprinkling

Here’s a great dinner party hack – let someone else do the cooking! La Belle Assiette (The Beautiful Plate) is available all over the country offering up professionals to handle anything from a special meal with friends to a big extended family bash. Perfect for big birthday, anniversaries, reunions and the like.

Not only will they save you the huffing, puffing and panicking over the cooking, serving and cleaning, this service goes much further.

La Belle Assiette dinner party long table lit white candles silver candelabra glass place mats wine glasses

Firstly because you have the choice of so many chefs (over 600 and counting). So you choose your chef based on his or her proximity (type your postcode into the site) , the type of cuisine offered, numbers catered for, the kind of party you’re having (canapes or tasting menu?) the reviews (anyone who has a dinner party is encouraged to review honestly) and the price which is transparent and easy to cost up – basically £39, £59 or £89 per person, depending on your budget. The booze of course is BYO so remember that plus the personal service when you’re comparing against restaurant prices.

Then your chef calls to discuss your likes and dislikes, pre-preps before arrival, cooks, serves and cleans up afterwards, allowing you to truly be part of your own party.

chef plating up food on surface

Chris Bond, licenced to cook up a storm

Hero at Muddy HQ near Oxford tried the service out. Here’s what she thought…..

I booked Chris Bond, a young private chef from Chesham, Buckinghamshire (about 35 mins from me) and OMG he was amazing. Just rocked up on his own, and not only provided the food but also brought along the crockery – I guess if you’re a chef the worst thing that can happen is that your beautiful food is served on some horrific plates that are the wrong shape and colour to showcase your dish.

We went for a tasting menu, basically because it’s been about a year since I’ve had a dinner party and probably another year before I have another, and we wanted to experience everything La Belle Assiette had to offer.

rice cracker grated lemon zest wasabi small clay bowl

Rice cracker with grated lemon zest, caviar and wasabi

This was the menu:

La Belle Assiette dinner party menu

But what I really loved was the theatre Chris brought to the evening. The menu we were given at the table turned out to be edible rice paper and we used it to eat the hummous and tatziki.

La Belle Assiette ripped up dinner party menu

A candle that Chris put on the table turned out to be beef dripping which he then blowtorched to melt it, before we mopped it up with soda bread.

blow torch flame melting flambé blrown dish

Everything was thought through and creative, and I absolutely loved it. The food was incredible, particularly the Heritage Carrot (yes it was a course – possibly the best carrot ever!), and the beef.

roasted heritage carrot peanut yogurt on brown plate

The heritage carrot – believe it or not, the talk of the table!

Tasting menus always fatigue me in the end and I was defeated by the desserts, but it’s a very easy recommendation from me both for the chef and this excellent business.

One to book now you’re tired of the new year lycra and positive affirmations?

La Belle Assiette. Tel: 02033185003. Email:

Find more ideas here

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