Booz­ing was key to my suc­cess, says chef Ker­ridge

The Mail on Sunday - - News - By Chris Hast­ings ARTS COR­RE­SPON­DENT

PRES­SURE: Celebrity chef Tom Ker­ridge in his drink­ing days CELEBRITY chef Tom Ker­ridge be­lieves his ‘colos­sal’ booz­ing helped him to suc­cess in the kitchen and on TV.

Re­call­ing years of heavy drink­ing, he tells Ra­dio 4’s Desert Is­land Discs to­day: ‘I don’t re­gret that pe­riod at all. Al­co­hol be­came a huge re­lease for driv­ing the busi­ness for­ward, to win­ning two Miche­lin stars...

‘It al­ways proved this mas­sive re­lease of en­ergy, of pres­sure.’

The 45-year-old, whose TV cred­its in­clude MasterChef and The Great Bri­tish Menu and whose Bucks gas­tropub The Hand & Flow­ers gained its sec­ond Miche­lin star in 2012, ad­mits drink­ing with the in­ten­tion of get­ting ‘smashed’.

But five years ago, he be­gan to have sleep­less nights about be­ing with­out al­co­hol.

He quit drink­ing and shed 12st through diet and ex­er­cise.

He adds: ‘I prob­a­bly am de­pen­dent on al­co­hol.

I can’t touch it. I am un­trust­wor­thy with it.

‘I would like to think that maybe one day I would be able to en­joy a glass of red wine with the roast beef that I love so much.

‘But at this mo­ment in time, there is no way that is al­lowed in my life.’

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