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Tate a Personal Disclaimer

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Tate - A Personal Statement

I am writing this personal statement to clarify my position with regard to the reviews, travelogues and articles that I write for the Vendée Guide. Trevor the creator of the guide is a good friend of mine and as such is instrumental in my ability to spend my summers in France. On my part I try to help him by writing these articles and editing the articles that he writes.

The reviews, travelogues and articles are entirely of my own creation and are based on my personal tastes and are therefore entirely subjective. I do not pretend to have any particular culinary expertise or qualifications, although I do pride myself in being a reasonable cook and I do love the whole process of eating and drinking and the socialising that goes with it. I have been fortunate during my life to eat at some fabulous restaurants, some large and very expensive, with culinary accolades and some small inexpensive family run eateries, however some of the best meals I have ever eaten have been cooked by friends in their homes. So far as restaurants are concerned I have always based my opinions on three things, firstly and in no particular order, the ambience of the restaurant, the surroundings, the decor and whether I feel at ease and well catered for by the staff. Secondly the quality of the food, whether it is well presented, and by that I do not necessarily mean that it needs to look like a work of art on a plate but more whether the way the food is presented is in keeping with the dish that I am eating and makes me want to eat it. Most important of course is the texture and the taste of the food. Lastly whether I consider that the restaurant offers good value for money. I am happy to pay a high price for a restaurant experience so long as I get something special in return.

I must confess that I am happier with more relaxed and informal dining than I am with silver service and small intimate settings rather than grand opulent surroundings. I like to interact with people including restaurant staff, and I am happy to listen to their suggestions, I enjoy good wine and have a fairly broad knowledge, but I hate overpaying for it. I often use the house wine as a barometer of a restaurant, if the restaurateur has not paid enough attention to his house wine and serves something inferior, it follows that he may not have paid enough attention to his food, after all in my opinion a restaurant experience is not just in the eating.

I like to comment on anything and everything in an attempt to give the reader the broadest possible picture. My style is to not only comment seriously on things but also to try to entertain, and in an effort to do that I invariably attempt to inject a sense of fun into my reviews, some people get it and some people don’t. To the former, I’m glad if my comments makes you chuckle, to the latter I’m sorry that we don’t share the same sense of humour however I do not mean any of my comments to be in any way offensive. I am not homophobic, sexist or chauvinistic, I am liberal in my views, red blooded and always prepared to give other people the benefit of the doubt. I can only hope that when you read my reviews you will afford me the same courtesy and that you treat all of my scribbling in the way that they are meant, as an attempt to assist you to enjoy your experience of whatever the article is about.

I sincerely hope that you have a fabulous time in the Vendée and if any of my articles in any way facilitate that then I will consider that my job is done. Tate - 2011

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