The Marco Pierre White show? Not any more!

Rachel Allen to re­place Tom Door­ley on TV3’s The Restau­rant, so...

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - NEWS - By Eoin Mur­phy eoin.mur­phy@mailon­sun­

WHEN The Restau­rant star Tom Door­ley re­cently served up his acer­bic res­ig­na­tion to TV3, it must have been a bit­ter pill to swal­low.

But now TV3 is like the cat that got the cream as it has se­cured Rachel Allen as a re­place­ment for the food critic.

Pop­u­lar Mr Door­ley, an MoS colum­nist, an­nounced he was quit­ting the show in Septem­ber af­ter 14 se­ries – with more than a pinch of re­sent­ment – af­ter he clashed with Marco Pierre White.

At the time of his res­ig­na­tion, Mr Door­ley wrote: ‘On the first night of shoot­ing he [White] was so un­bear­able – con­tra­dict­ing, mak­ing lofty pro­nounce­ments, talk­ing over the rest of us and never shut­ting up – that I told him not to be so ‘f***ing pa­tro­n­is­ing’.

‘Marco is like a hu­man vor­tex; when he has an au­di­ence, ev­ery­thing is in or­bit around him and he will not take any di­rec­tion from floor man­agers, cam­era­men, di­rec­tors or me.’

Mr White as­sumed his role at the critic’s ta­ble fol­low­ing the death of Paolo Tul­lio in 2015. But, just two

‘I hope she does bet­ter than I did with Marco’

sea­sons later, Mr Door­ley called time on the show, claim­ing it had quickly be­come the Marco show and that he could no longer con­tinue work­ing with the pro­duc­tion.

‘Sud­denly The Restau­rant was trans­formed into The Marco Pierre White Show for se­ries thir­teen.

‘We aban­doned Wine Port near Athlone, where we had done the pro­gramme for years, and trans­ferred to Marco Pierre’s restau­rant in Don­ny­brook, where he now took, lit­er­ally, cen­tre stage,’ wrote Mr Door­ley at the time.

Ac­cord­ing to a TV3 in­sider, the show’s pro­duc­ers were not sur­prised over Mr Door­ley’s de­par­ture and have lined up top telly cook Ms Allen, to fill his shoes.

The Bal­ly­maloe star has ap­peared as a guest critic on sev­eral oc­ca­sions and is no stranger to the for­mat.

It is ma­jor book­ing for the Bal­ly­mount broad­caster as Ms Allen is also star­ring on the Chan­nel 4 for­mat My Kitchen Rules.

She is also a reg­u­lar sta­ple on RTÉ’s cook­ing show sched­ule – hav­ing filmed sev­eral shows from her Co Cork kitchen.

The Restau­rant has proven to be a ma­jor hit for the com­mer­cial broad­caster since buy­ing in the for­mat af­ter RTE axed it from its sched­ule. It also re­placed Celebrity Masterchef on TV3 which was can­celled af­ter bring­ing in weak view­ing fig­ures.

TV3 de­clined to com­ment on the ap­point­ment. How­ever, a se­nior source told the Mail that Ms Allen will be join­ing the team.

‘Rachel is a pro­fes­sional and we have no doubts that she will com­pli­ment Marco in The Restau­rant. The show works be­cause it has a great bal­ance be­tween the chefs in the kitchen, the front-of­house team and, of course, the din­ers. The judges are an im­por­tant com­po­nent and we were keen to cast Tom’s re­place­ment care­fully.

‘Rachel has a proven TV pedi­gree and is a house­hold name – not just in Ire­land, so it is an ap­point­ment that should please ev­ery­one.’

Film­ing for the new se­ries is ex­pected to take place at Marco’s Dublin restau­rant early in the New Year. Speak­ing to the MoS, Tom wished the Cork cook well with her new en­deav­our and he said he hopes that she fares bet­ter with Marco than he did.

‘When I heard she was do­ing the show I was a bit sur­prised but I am de­lighted for her,’ he said. ‘Rachel is a good friend and I wish her all the best and I just hope she does bet­ter than I did with Marco.’

reCipe for suC­Cess?: Rachel is to re­place Tom on TV3 show with Marco, in­set

Crit­iCs: Tom with Rachel on an episode of TV3’s The Restau­rant

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