THE MODERN MINT BLOG

Jan25

Quay Theatre, Sudbury

New Talk at the Quay Theatre, Sudbury

Darren will be presenting a brand new talk on March 12th, 2017 at the beautiful Quay Theatre in Sudbury.

Visit the Quay’s website for details!

The theatre itself is just past the cricket ground, next to the river, and not only provides Suffolk with a range of theatre, music, comedy and talks (like Darren’s new one!) but every Friday and Saturday night it opens its top floor to Carl Shillingford.

Carl is a Michelin trained chef and something of a Sudbury secret. He forages and prepares a range of ‘wild’ foods, creating his own recipes, before serving a small number of covers each evening.

It feels like a strange business model, because where do you go from there? Neither the restaurant nor the kitchen are big enough to expand into, so each week Shillingford’s can only do the same work. We mentioned it is a strange business model, but actually it is just different – you are there to do good work, put your name on it and take responsibility for it, thrill people every week. You earn enough money and you get to do it again.

It is almost the Anti-Trump way of working – growth is not the point, doing something amazing is.

Considering the waiting list is months long for a table – Shillingfords at the Quay Theatre are doing something right!

We met Carl briefly at an event we did about 18 months ago, where he demonstrated some of the food he cooks (this was foraged mushrooms, yummy and divine!) and when we popped into the Quay to sign some paperwork ready for our talk, we took a brief look upstairs at the restaurant.

It looked fab, tucked away on the top floor. On the menu board were a choice of 3 starters, 3 mains and 3 desserts. One of the desserts was a local, Suffolk cheese board. How fresh and good does that sound? All the dishes were reasonably priced, like £8 or £10….

They currently have 126 reviews on Trip Advisor. 123 of these reviews are excellent, 3 reviews are very good.

New Talk at the Quay, Sudbury

As we mentioned, March 12th we will be presenting our new talk at the Quay Theatre in Sudbury. We think the place is beautiful and offers lots to try out – whether food, a show, or just sitting by the river – so do take a closer look on their website and plan your visit.

Green Elements, A New Talk by Darren of Modern Mint

Jun14

The Telegraph Wrote About My Topiary Work Yesterday

If you have a subscription, you can check out an article about bespoke ideas for your garden in the Telegraph. There are some great crafts people there, so check it out. Click Here To See The Article About my Topiary Work In The Telegraph

Jun06

Lockdown Thinking, Changes A-Coming…

Topiary Modern Mint

Lockdown has given me a chance to look through old notebooks and begin, gently, to piece together some sort of narrative about Modern Mint and how it has grown over the last six years. And it has changed massively in that time! Modern Mint Now, June Lockdown 2020 I currently make and maintain topiary all over the UK for clients who love well-pruned hedges and sculptures. I love this job – it is a beautiful art. In the winter I prune wisteria, roses and fruit trees in orchards. Much colder, shorter work days… but equally satisfying work. I give talks …

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Jun06

The Garden In Motion

During lockdown I went through a number of old notebooks. I found a note about Gilles Clement and The Garden In Motion – Le Jardin En Mouvement. Underneath my note I had written: “To be researched more! Something to definitely think over!” Now, five years later I have looked again… and am thrilled by this idea. The Garden In Motion is about taking a piece of unused land, and then as the gardener you make choices to do ‘as much as possible for the land and as little as possible against’ it. You are talking about limited input – watering, …

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