Monday 14 November 2011

My VIP trip to Masterchef Live

This time last year, I was delighted to win a pair of tickets to the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham. While I was at the show, I popped my details on an entry card and posted it in a box by the entrance, for a competition to win tickets to Masterchef Live in London this year. There must have been tens of thousands of entries,  so I was delighted to get a phone call earlier this year to say I was the winner.

The prize consisted of VIP tickets for four people on two days, front row  tickets for all four of us to two of the Chefs Theatre performances, a night in a hotel and £500 of spending money.  The show ran from 11-13 November and we took the prize trip on the 11th and 12th.

On arriving at the show, we  made our way to the VIP lounge, a room set aside just for people with VIP  tickets, where we were given shopping bags and show guides and £20 each of tokens to use in the restaurant area. The lounge was a comfortable, spacious place where we could safely leave coats and shopping, relax with a cup of tea and a snack - or even a glass of champagne - and  enjoy talks  and demonstrations specially laid on for VIP visitors. There were even  a few VIP only competitions! It would have been quite possible to spend all our time at the show in  there, but we were anxious to get out and see what the  show had to offer.

Tim Anderson cooks against Phil Vickery, hosted by John Torode and Greg Wallace
Masterchef Live doesn't have as many "big business" exhibitors as the Good Food Show,  the emphasis is much more on the demonstrations which took place at several places in the hall, and on the restaurant area where small dishes  typical of the menus of a dozen top London restaurants were on sale. The upstairs gallery was host to scores of stalls from small producers and I was delighted to meet up with friends from Twitter such as Kate from Gower Cottage brownies, the lovely boys from Daas beer  and former Masterchef finalist Tim Kinnaird.

Also upstairs was a  large hall hosting the Wine Show  - tasting glasses  and highly tasteful glass holders to hang around our necks  were also included in our VIP bags.

Masterchef winner 2011, Tim  Anderson

One of the joys of  having a two day  ticket was that on the first day we didn't need to do  any shopping.We could look around the stalls (and of course enter the competitions) without having to juggle bags and boxes. As we left at the end of the first day, we were given  VIP goody bags crammed with samples, recipe books and packs of  biscuits.
me with Marcus Bean, last year's winner of Iron Chef UK, and  Michael Caines
The second day was  a repeat of the first, with more shopping bags, show guides, goody bags and meal tokens, but this time with an added treat - the PR lady looking after us had managed to arrange for us to have our lunch in the Green Room where all the celebrity chefs went to chill out between performances. There we were lucky enough to meet Michael Caines, this year's Masterchef winner Tim Anderson  and Plenty's own Superstar, Juan Sheet!

My life is complete, I've been hugged  by Juan Sheet!


  1. What a lovely prize, I like that you have the widest smile in your photo with Juan Sheet. :)

  2. Wow Jane what a great trip and fancy meeting ...Juan Sheet !! Seriously it sounds fabulous. Congratulations!


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