Cooking up a smile
Simon Martin’s Manchester restaurant, Mana, has just been awarded a Michelin Star; the city’s first in 40 years. Naturally, he can’t stop smiling and, thanks to The Dental Academy, a leading private dental practice run by Kevin and Jan Dobbs, smiling is something he can now do with confidence!
How did you discover The Dental Academy?
Well, this is going to sound a bit strange but it was through their potted herbs and vegetables! Jan and Kevin also have a thriving vegetable business, Growing@ Field28. I only use the best produce so I bought from them but I didn’t know that their day job was dentistry until Jan noticed that I was a bit self-conscious about my smile and offered to help.
Were you embarrassed about your smile?
Not embarrassed no but I was aware that it wasn’t as good as it could be. Back in the day I used to enjoy motocross racing and yes, you’ve guessed it, that’s where the problems began: an accident when I was 16 meant that I lost my two front teeth! Various visits to various dentists ensued but the caps they put on would invariably fall out: I used to worry about taking a bite out of an apple-not a good look for a chef!
How did The Dental Academy restore your confidence in dentists?
The moment I walked in; I knew that this was no ordinary dental practice. The carefully restored Victorian building is set in its own grounds and is tastefully and beautifully furnished. It just feels peaceful and relaxed-the delicious coffee helps-and it’s possible to forget that you’re at the dentist at all. Besides, it instantly shows that aesthetics is taken seriously here.
The practice has all the latest and best equipment. Kevin heads the team and he takes masses of time to explain exactly what he is going to do at each stage, which gave me a sense of control and input. Of course, the professionalism which shines through the whole team made me feel as if I was in expert hands which, of course, I was! It seems a bit odd to say my dental appointments were fun, doesn’t it, but they were. Kevin has a great sense of humour and no, he doesn’t have that annoying habit of talking to you when your mouth is being worked on!
What treatment did you have?
I had treatment for gingivitis and a set of veneers. I kept waiting for some discomfort-I had psyched myself up to be brave- but I didn’t have to be a brave solider as the whole procedure caused minimum discomfort. Not only is Kevin a wizard at dentistry, he is an absolute genius when it comes to using anaesthetic.
I’d travel many miles to have treatment like that but you know, the Dental Academy is very conveniently placed and for me that was hugely important, as I just can’t be away from Mana for too long. It’s also great value because work done at the Dental Academy doesn’t have to be re-done.
Are there any similarities between a top chef and a top dentist?
Of course! We both have to be hugely disciplined and determined to stay at the top of our profession. We must be knowledgeable, efficient, inspire our teams and ensure that our clients trust us to give them a world class service.
Can you stop smiling?
No! Why would I? I’m quite a smiley person anyway and besides, I have a Michelin starred restaurant and, thanks to the Dental Academy, a perfect smile.
The song says, ‘All I want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth’. You already have that: what else would you like?
How about a 40-litre stockpot!