Shane McMahon and more about the wonderful Bavaria
Continuing with my series on the wonderful food and people from Bavaria, this week I had the chance to interview Shane McMahon, an Irish Chef who has been cooking in Munich for the past 20 years. Shane runs "Supper Clubs" in Munich at "Shane's Kitchen". "Supper Clubs" are close to my heart as I regularly run them to raise money for the Jamie Oliver Foundation.
How did you end up living and working in Germany as a Chef?
Living and working in Germany as a Chef – funny to say: I only wanted to stay for six months for experience. I fell straight away in love with the German way of working and I decided to stay a bit longer. That was 20 years ago…
Tell me a little bit about the food that you cook?
The food that I cook is quite simple. It has got to do with using the best produce and lots of experience in cooking with that produce….
Are there any similarities between German and Irish food?
Difficult to say. Yes and no. The Germans like the Irish love pork, cabbage and potatoes, but they both prepare these ingredients differently.
What is the common misconception about German food?
A lot of people think German food is very heavy, and that Germans eat only “****”, “Schweinshaxe” and sausages. That is also what I thought. In reality it is not true at all.
What do you love about Bavarian food?
That it is not sophisticated. It is honest. Tastes good. And always fits to a beer.
Tell me a little bit about your Supper Clubs, how did they start?
The story is simple: At the end of 2007 I opened a kitchen studio in the heart of Munich. A neat and sweet location. Cooking events, cooking courses, meetings, seminars, gourmet meals – all this takes place at this location and then I was only running closed events. Within a few months more and more people called the hotline of Shane's Kitchen: They wanted to book a table. Can't do that. Only small groups or cooking course participants can enjoy the culinary pleasures here. Then a discussion with a good friend who said that he would like to enjoy my food every now and then as well, either alone or in somebody's company. Difficult: Shane's Kitchen is not an ordinary restaurant. What now? An American friend then set the ball rolling: Why not open a Supper Club? Supper Club? In the US this idea has been established for a long time. A dinner club with evening programme in a laid-back ambiance. Simple meals. Good drinks. Easy-going. In short: A group of like-minded people. How can this work in Munich? The idea was born: Every first Sunday each month – starting in December 2008 – Shane's Kitchen hosts a Supper Club Evening. The evenings start at 7 pm. Flying Food, many small „flying" courses are served. You can eat at bar tables or have a seat at restaurant tables. Easy-going. Relaxed. Everybody can look over my shoulder while I am cooking and arranging food. Fitting wines. Gourmet networking.
Who have you had cooking with you at your Supper Clubs?
For each Supper Club-event we have an expert in the field join us. For example, there was a butcher, a sushi master, an Indian Chef, a Thai Chef, a specialist for fish, chutneys, herbs, a pastry Chef.
Tell me about the food scene in Munich?
In my opinion Munich is the culinary leader of Germany. Spending hard-earned cash on culinary extravagances has become second nature to the locals. The city boasts many restaurants ranging from the good to the very good, however, it should be noted that the quality of the cooking is not the only thing that is high, the prices are fixed accordingly. The city boasts many restaurants ranging from the good to the very good.
If there was one dish that you could not live without what would that be?
There is no special dish. But if there was a dish it would be the Bavarian Schweinebraten with potato dumpling.
Earlier this year I was fortunate enough to spend a fantastic weekend in Nuremberg and the more that I write about Bavarian food and wine the more time I want to spend there discovering, seeing and tasting. Here are my top picks for the visit:
http://www.bavaria.us/cb9ca910-b4d4-7fd … 7213fbb51e
http://www.bavaria.us/282605b3-9506-e83 … 73e700ead7
http://www.bavaria.us/garmisch-partenki … estaurants
http://www.bavaria.us/e6d8cc86-49b8-8ff … e5073f5956
http://www.bavaria.us/cb436987-72f1-955 … fad860ed24
For more information on great places to eat, cook, experience food in Bavaria check out
Hallo gutes Thema,
Ach ja Bayern ist so cool.
Not as cool as London but blooming good! There are some amazing things to eat, for sure. I think Bavarian bread is the world leader. Vegetables are also up there. There is a lot of meat, mostly indoor factory farmed. Herrmannsdorfer, is one of the good ones.
We love the Notwist,Acid Pauli, 13 and God amongst other Bavarian musicians.
I love Fraunhoffer,it just says Bavaria to me in a big way. They are really nice people who run Fraunhoffer. Also in that area(ish) check out Solo Pizza. They are also very nice people.
I know .it’s not very German, but there is an excellent Spanish Deli and Mexican shop in Munich. The Mexicans make Tamales and other goodies for the freezer. The Spanish people are Basque people,good food is in their blood, well worth visiting.
Devon has the best produce in the world though. I had Day boat Brill tonight, as good as Turbot, I think. I had some local Harlequin squash on the side amongst other things. It was the best squash I have ever had. Fruit crumble (bad year for apples) was amazing. Devon has taken over from Wales for lamb/hogget/mutton.
Mushrooms in Munich are a joy to see. I have to pick them in Devon, stalls are not everywhere, like Munich. Semel Piltz is my favourite, (hedgehog mushroom in English).
Also Poppy seed cake is a favourite of mine. Butter Pretzel mmmmmmm!
November see's me back in Bavaria, I can’t wait. The Isar is calling me.
Again great subject. London first(Gordon Ramsay), Cornwall(15)
P.S. is the man on the bike with the Goose still around?
Thats at Fraunhoffer Strasse, not at Ludwigstrasse. Walk the Isar after your meal via Fraunhoffer Bridge its beautiful.