Surfing mad TV chef Jamie gets a taste of Mumbles seaside flavour
Celebrity chef has been sampling Swansea hospitality during filming for his new show.
The TV cook and food campaigner spent two days at locations in Mumbles and Gower fishing, barbecuing and learning about that great Welsh culinary institution — Italian ice cream.
Television bosses are staying tight-lipped about the chef's new project, but it is expected to hit screens later this year — and it seems it is going to have a Welsh flavour.
During his visit to the city by the sea he spent time at the family-run Verdi's ice cream parlour in Mumbles.
Sara Mouzzi, daughter of the parlour's founder Joe, said: "Jamie was fantastic — a really nice guy.
"He spent a couple of hours with us seeing how we make ice cream sundaes and knickerbocker glories, and having a go himself.
"He also spent a long time sitting and talking to my father about our Italian heritage, which he seemed to find really interesting.
"Afterwards he took the time to sign photographs and have his picture taken — he was wonderful.
"He then invited a lot of the staff to go surfing with him — but in the end the conditions weren't right so he invited them to a barbecue."
As well as trying his hand at ice cream, the popular cook took to the waters of Swansea Bay for a spot of lobster fishing — and was spotted hauling in lobster pots in Langland Bay. His trip finished with a barbecue in Oxwich Bay.
Jamie shot to fame during the late 1990s as The Naked Chef — and his cheeky Essex boy persona and easy-to-follow recipes quickly made him a hit with the public. He has gone on to create a TV, cook book and restaurant empire, as well as famously launching a campaign to improve the quality of school dinners.
In 2004 he was awarded an MBE.
One of the people to see the chef landing his catch of fresh lobster in Mumbles was freelance photographer Nick Thomas, from Langland.
The 33-year-old said: "I'd heard he was filming around Mumbles and popped down to Knab Rock. He hopped off the boat proudly brandishing two lobsters he had caught. He was really friendly and personable.
"The film crew obviously wanted to get on with the job but he took the time to stop and chat and pose for some pictures.
"He was just like he is on the telly — laughing and joking."
Extracted from South Wales Evening Post article by Jason Evans.www.thisissouthwales.com