It’s OFFICIAL: Chef Works UK & Ireland is the new sponsor of THE PASS podcast with host, Paul Newbegin.
We’re delighted to be partnering with THE PASS to bring you more fascinating interviews and valuable insights from some of Britain’s most respected chefs, kitchens and food lovers. We’ve been big fans of THE PASS since it started over a year ago, and now three seasons in, with an ever-mounting list of big names clambering to appear on the show, we’re stoked to be able to support THE PASS as it continues to rise up the podcast polls.
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In the meantime though, ahead of the launch of Series 4, we turned the mic the other way and interviewed Paul Newbegin, creator of THE PASS, about his favourite guests so far, the secret art of interviewing, his love of food and his plans for the future.
Hi Paul! Tell us about THE PASS in one lines
THE PASS Podcast is the ultimate food lovers’ podcast, featuring incredibly exciting people from the world of food and drink!
How long have you been doing THE PASS?
Just over a year now. My first ever guest was Andrew Pern in May 2017.
What inspired you to do it?
I am a huge foodie and a lover of podcasts so one day I was trying to find a regular podcast with the chefs I admire and noticed there were none. From that day the seeds were sown.
Who listens to THE PASS?
Lots of chefs and people in the industry have responded incredibly well to the podcast. I know that there are plenty of discerning foodies who tune in too.
Above: Paul interviewing Chef John Feeney who featured in the 7 Chefs Raby Hunt episode.
What’s the best feedback on the podcast you’ve had so far?
When I go to an interview, often the chef remarks that they play it during prep or service. That is a massive compliment.
And your biggest success to date?
Probably featuring Nick Kokonas from Tock and Alinea group. That guy is mega!
Who’d be your dream guest to host on the podcast?
Too many to mention! But Heston Blumenthal and Jason Atherton were the reason I became interested in the world of food and drink.
Your passion for the podcast is born out of a love for food and eating out. What’s been your favourite ever meal out?
UK-wise everyone knows I love Raby Hunt in Darlington. James Close is a hugely talented chef and has become a friend since. His dedication is unreal. I rarely return to restaurants, so this is the ultimate compliment I can give. The one that stands out to me is Le Cochon Aveugle in York, UK. I was a guest in the first few months of Josh and Vicky Overington taking over and have returned four or five times since. They are probably my closest friends from the world of food and drink and because of this Josh will always feature in every series in some way.
Above: Chef Josh Overington
Are you a good cook yourself?
I like to think so. I love entertaining and love being the host. I have my own small chefs’ library of cookbooks and equipment that I use all the time.
Where will you be eating out this winter?
The next Michelin place I have booked isn’t until January, but it’s The White Swan at Fence, UK. I got a tip they were going to win the star this year before the event, and so got booked in fast!
Ever had experience in a professional kitchen?
Yes! Quite a few times. I worked full time in food recently for a few months, and have done learning days at Norse and Skosh.
What kind of interviewer are you?
You’d have to ask my guests! But I like to think I am more of a conversationalist than an interviewer. I ask what I am interested in from that person as a foodie and a fan of the industry, and I always let them talk!
What’s been your most challenging interview?
Every interview is a challenge in its own way. I never prepare notes on what questions to ask before the interview, because I like it to feel as spontaneous as possible. Not everyone is a natural speaker, but they bring a different dynamic to myself.
Which guest were you most nervous about?
No question, it was Tom Aikens. He is a chef I massively admire and respect. But honestly I’ve been nervous loads of times!
Your listeners know a tonne about your guests now, but what do they not know about you?
I have a tattoo inspired by the 15th Earl of Shrewsbury. Don’t ask!
What do you think, having chatted to so many experts, are the main issues facing the restaurant industry right now?
Definitely mental health is a big one. It’s something I am hugely passionate about myself, too. Obviously the chefs I speak to are ones who dedicate so much of themselves to their creations and their craft and that brings pressure. I hope to use the podcast going forward to connect people in the industry that feel depressed or anxious, so they realise they aren’t alone.
Chef Works and THE PASS – a match made in hospitality heaven?!
I’m delighted to partner with passionate people, and Chef Works are that through and through. The commitment to quality that Chef Works has is inspiring, and ultimately they have let me have creative control and given me support from day one.
There is a special episode that was dreamed up between Chef Works and myself that launches this season, and I think you’ll see more of that style going forward. I am hugely excited about the exclusive Chef Works content we are working on so watch this space!
That makes two of us. Thanks to Paul for switching seats and being the interviewee for once, and tune in to the Chef Works-sponsored Series 4 of THE PASS, running from 23rd November 2018 – February 2019.