FOR THE NEXT COURSE… Ap­petis­ing projects from a trio of lead­ing fe­male chefs

the fe­male chefs fly­ing high with new culi­nary ven­tures

Harper's Bazaar (UK) - - Contents - By HE­LENA LEE

seemed to me, al­most, that my fa­ther had got to where he was by climb­ing upon my in­fant shoul­ders, that he had filched from me my good name and had left mew ith noth­ing but the empty fame of be­ing his son.’

But Ann Th­waite stresses that Christo­pher Robin Milne went on to have a happy life. He did, af­ter all, agree to Th­waite’s bi­og­ra­phy – though in part be­cause she wasn’t ‘a Win­nie-the-Pooh fa­natic’. Now the sec­tion of her book that cov­ers the time­line of the film is pub­lished as a com­pan­ion piece, with an in­tro­duc­tion from one of the scriptwrit­ers, Frank Cot­trell Boyce.

Boyce was drawn to the story, he says, be­cause ‘it’s so fa­mous, it’s cur­rency for all of us – and so it is a re­ally good way to talk about the re­la­tion­ship be­tween fa­thers and chil­dren. Milne en­tered his son’s world so com­pletely – every sen­tence of the books is like a child talk­ing, but it’s also in­cred­i­bly poised. Through that win­dow, through shar­ing that with Christo­pher Robin, Milne was able to en­ter every nurs­ery, every child­hood, as well.’ And Boyce finds Christo­pher Robin’s later life very poignant: ‘He was trapped in that child­hood. Christo­pher Robin did grow up; and no­body wanted him to. I recog­nise that as a dad – that de­sire to be part of their world, the de­sire for them never to grow up.’

Th­waite may not de­scribe her­self as a Win­nie-the-Pooh fa­natic, but there are plenty who are, and they will have a fab­u­lous year; for to­wards Christ­mas there is an­other treat in store. The V&A will be host­ing ‘Win­nie-thePooh: Ex­plor­ing a Clas­sic’, which will ex­am­ine the part­ner­ship be­tween Milne and the il­lus­tra­tor EH Shep­ard, whose draw­ings are so in­deli­bly as­so­ci­ated with the books. Per­haps it’s no sur­prise that Milne’s char­ac­ters are so en­dur­ing: for all his doubts about the na­ture of his fame, he must have known the power of his work. For as he wrote: ‘In that en­chanted place on the top of the For­est, a lit­tle boy and his Bear will al­ways be play­ing.’ ‘Good­bye Christo­pher Robin: AA Milne and the Mak­ing of Win­nie-the-Pooh’ by Ann Th­waite, with a pref­ace by Frank

Cot­trell Boyce (£ 8.99, Pan) is pub­lished on 21 Septem­ber.

‘Good­bye Christo­pher Robin’ is in cin­e­mas from

29 Septem­ber.

ELIZ­A­BETH HAIGH

The for­mer head chef of Pid­gin earned the restau­rant a Miche­lin star, and now plans to open her own ven­ture, Shibui, pair­ing Bri­tish pro­duce and Asian flavours with the art of the

wood-fired grill (www. kaizen­house.co.uk/shibui). CLARE SMYTH As the chef-pa­tron of Gor­don Ram­say’s epony­mous restau­rant, Clare Smyth won three Miche­lin stars. Her highly an­tic­i­pated project, Core, serves Mod­ern Bri­tish fare with el­e­gant flair (www. core­by­clares­myth.com). RUTH ROGERS The en­dur­ing ap­peal of the River Cafe is thanks to the tal­ent and tenac­ity of Ruth Rogers, who set up the restau­rant with the late

Rose Gray. She’s cel­e­brat­ing its 30th an­niver­sary with a bril­liant cook­book. ‘River Cafe 30’ (£28, Ebury Press).

Left: The Fo­lio So­ci­ety’s edi­tion of ‘Win­nie-the-Pooh’, il­lus­trated by EH Shep­ard. Be­low: a still from the new film, ‘Good­bye Christo­pher Robin’

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