The Restaurant

George Hook

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This week's guest critic...

George Hook was born in Cork but has spent most of his adult life in Dublin, interspersed with stints in Geneva with the United Nations and in America as director of USA Rugby. George is married to Ingrid and they have three children.

Although he qualified as an accountant, he ran a catering company for over twenty years, as well as coaching rugby on an international level. But for the last fifteen years the media has dominated his life; George and his kitchen opponent Tom McGurk are mainstays of RTÉ television's rugby coverage, and he presents the daily drive time programme, The Right Hook, on Newstalk Radio.

When George last visited The Restaurant kitchen he was working with Brent Pope as an ally, but this time around the competition is on between himself and Tom. George is hoping to come out on top and doesn't plan on falling in to the same trap as last time.

"I did a menu that I wanted to eat, I didn't think about what would appeal to the diners or critics so I lost out, I won't make the same mistake again".

Indeed his previous menu, which included tripe and crubeens was met with some resistance from the dining room floor. So he's toned his traditional Cork fare down a notch but at the same time managed to stay true to his Munster roots, with a selection of dishes that he believes Paul O'Connell would happily devour the night before a big game, featuring a starter of haddock from a West Cork smokery.

George is confident that his simply prepared Irish ingredients and his steely determination will lead him to glory with the critics.


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