Super chef wowed by Sheffield’s finest

Marco Pierer Whire with Simon Smeley and Hendersn's Relish
Marco Pierer Whire with Simon Smeley and Hendersn's Relish
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ONE’S White the other’s black – and they both make food taste divine.

The white – Michelin starred super chef Marco Pierre White – was introduced to the black – Henderson’s Relish – in a very unlikely place.

The two came together in Dubai, where the chef was introduced to the black stuff by Simon Smedley – a radio DJ from Sheffield who hosts a show on Dubai 92.

Simon, known to Dubai radio listeners as Catboy, said Marco was in town to open a new five star restaurant and came into the station for an interview.

He said: “I asked if he’d ever cooked with Hendorson’s and he said he’d never heard of it.

“I showed him the design of the bottle online and he made the obvious Lea & Perrins comparison.

“I took offence to this, like all Sheffielders should, and put him straight on how much better it was. I then gave him a little history of Henderson’s, it’s famous fans and the factory.

“I showed him photos and regaled him with the story about the sign getting nicked, which amused him no end.”

Simon’s villa is only a short drive from Dubai Studio City, where Dubai 92’s studios are, so his wife Lorra volunteered to drive home to fetch some.

She arrived shortly afterwards clutching a bottle which had been brought to Dubai by Simon’s mum and dad Jackie and Andy Smedley.

Simon said: “Marco went on to drink about half of the bottle, pouring himself a lid-full every now and then, dissecting the taste and saying what it would be good with.

“He also said he’d visit the Henderson’s factory when he was back in Britain.

“When I say he said this, I mean he wouldn’t let it drop. He was really passionate about going there. He talked about other homespun products and their owners and how he’d spent time with them. Very interesting stuff.

“At the end of the interview, he asked if he could really take the bottle with him. He was like a kid at Christmas.”

Now Simon has been left without any Henderson’s – but is sure he will have some soon.

But he said: “There is a massive ex-pat community out here and every time I mention it on radio, I have listeners saying they’ll have some brought out for me.”