Monday 1st June 2015 

Magic Breakfast will hold its inaugural Magic Dinner at Hoi Polloi, Shoreditch, on Monday 15 June, hosted by Laura Jackson & Alice Levine, with dinner cooked by seven of London’s most exciting chefs.

In the kitchen alongside Hoi Polloi’s head chef Braden Charlesworth will be Isaac McHale (The Clove Club), James Lowe (Lyle’s), Nuno Mendes (Taberna do Mercado & Chiltern Firehouse), Lee Westcott (Typing Room) and Andy Oliver & Mark Dobbie (Som Saa), each cooking a signature course.

Magic Dinner will be a fundraising feast for Magic Breakfast, a national charity with its origins in Hackney. The charity delivers free, healthy breakfasts to over 17,500 school children in deprived areas who would otherwise be too hungry to learn.

100 tickets, priced at £100 each, are now on sale with all proceeds going directly to the charity.  In addition to an incredible menu, guests will enjoy some of Hoi Polloi’s legendary cocktails as well as wines by Fields, Morris & Verdin. Guest should also, in true Hoi Polloi fashion, expect a little unexpected entertainment.

At least 500,000 children in the UK go to school hungry each day (Source: Nutrition Bulletin). A hungry child cannot concentrate, missing out on core, morning lessons and a chance at educational success.

Magic Breakfast works with 440 schools, but has around 300 schools on its waiting list requesting urgent food aid. Funds raised from Magic Dinner will enable the charity to start working with the most critical of these waiting list schools.

Carmel McConnell, founder and CEO of Magic Breakfast, said: “Poverty and hunger should not be a barrier to a child’s education and we can change that for as little as 22p per child per day. I am passionate about helping each child achieve their potential so am indebted to the amazing chefs, Laura Jackson, Alice Levine and all the staff at Hoi Polloi for giving their time so generously to help Magic Breakfast solve the problem of child hunger as a barrier to learning in this country”.

Magic Dinner is being supported by The Independent on Sunday. The paper’s editor, Lisa Markwell, said: “I’m in awe of everything Magic Breakfast does to battle child hunger in Britain and so I am thrilled to be involved with the Magic Dinner at Hoi Polloi. As well as The Independent on Sunday partnering up for the event, I’m personally rolling up my sleeves. Food and writing are two of my favourite things, so to be able to combine them by editing a special newspaper for the event is a challenge I can’t wait to get my teeth into…

James Lowe, the head chef of Lyle’s: “I’m excited to be cooking for Magic Dinner, it’s such a great way to raise awareness for the charity. I think it’s fitting to be cooking with the best chefs in East London seeing as how the charity started in Hackney”.

Lee Westcott, Executive Chef of Typing Room in Bethnal Green Town Hall Hotel: “I wanted to get involved in Magic Breakfast charity as I truly admire what it is all about. I think education is so important for how it shapes us in our future lives and having hungry kids at school is never good for their concentration levels”.


About Magic Breakfast

Magic Breakfast delivers free, healthy breakfast food to 440 schools in England, giving over 17,500 children fuel for learning each school day. With the generous support of food and logistics partners, each breakfast costs the charity just 22p a day per child – about £10 per term.

Headteachers at the charity’s partner schools report better concentration, behaviour, attendance and attainment among children receiving Magic Breakfast food. The charity also advises schools on nutrition, food hygiene, on the setting up of reading schemes, and on how to reach the most vulnerable and hungry children and families in the school community.

Magic Breakfast wants to apply its successful model to solving the problem of child hunger as a barrier to education for good by 2020. This means reaching more schools and providing resources to all hunger hit schools.



About Jackson & Levine

Jackson & Levine is a joint venture from Laura Jackson and Alice Levine.  Both working in TV and Radio they found common ground over their lifelong love of food whilst sifting through clothes at a jumble sale.  They then decided to take on the world of food themselves and the eponymous supper club was set up in late 2013.  Since the supper club was founded the girls have hosted bespoke events for numerous fashion brands, collaborated with Jamie Oliver, written a food column for Company Magazine and now are bi-monthly contributors on ELLEUK.COM.

Laura and Alice have some on-screen projects in the pipeline and are excited about taking Jackson & Levine on the road in the summer to some of their favourite festivals.

About Hoi Polloi

Hoi Polloi is a modernist brasserie for a forward-thinking Shoreditch, open from 7am daily for breakfast, lunch, dinner, late supper, nightcaps and all the bits in-between. Hoi Polloi’s to the point menu, under the watchful eye of Head Chef Braden Charlesworth, is all about seasonal cooking that makes use of quality English ingredients, common sense and good taste.  Address: 100 Shoreditch High Street, London E1 6JQ.

About the Chefs

Braden Charlesworth is the recently appointed head chef at Hoi Polloi at Ace Hotel London Shoreditch.  An Australian chef with British heritage, he is a keen forager and gardener and is passionate about cooking as locally and seasonally as possible.  Prior to joining Ace in 2013, Braden was head chef at Flemings in Mayfair.

James Lowe is the head chef of Lyle’s in the Tea Building in Shoreditch. Formerly part of the chef collective the Young Turks, he went on to work as Head Chef of St. John Bread and Wine.  Lowe offers a seasonal British menu, drawing inspiration from his travels and always looking at ways to collaborate with chefs around the world.  His Guest Series has become a popular stalwart of Lyle’s, having hosted James Henry of Bones in Paris, Elena Reygadas of Rosetta in Mexico and Junya Yamasaki of Koya in London.

Isaac McHale is the Head Chef of The Clove Club in Shoreditch Town Hall.  His restaurant offers a cool, modern approach to British food, with all the elements of the menu locally sourced and changing daily, and the restaurant also boasts a selection of meats which they cure in-house.  Isaac’s previous experience in kitchens includes The Ledbury, Noma and as 1/3 of the chef collective the Young Turks.

Nuno Mendes is a Lisbon born Michelin star chef and founder of multiple restaurants in London.  His home country, Portugal, as well as his extensive experiences abroad have been a constant source of inspiration for his cooking. He is a pioneer in gastronomy and always searching for innovative and inventive culinary techniques and experiences.  After being at the helm of The Loft Project and Viajante, Nuno went on to open Chiltern Firehouse in 2014.  However it is his most recent project, Taberna do Mercado, which opened to the public 11th May 2015, which is a true reflection of his culinary passion.

Andy Oliver & Mark Dobbie are the co-head chefs of Som Saa currently residing in Climpsons Arch. They met in London in 2009 at the Michelin starred Nahm restaurant under the tutelage of the legendary David Thompson and since then have continued to deepen their understanding of Thai food and culture. Andy went on to work at Bo.Lan in Bangkok, Nahm London and then at the Begging Bowl in Peckham. Mark meanwhile rose to become head chef at Pok Pok in New York and was instrumental in them winning a Michelin star in 2014.

Lee Westcott is Executive Chef of Typing Room in Bethnal Green Town Hall Hotel.  His background includes working with Michelin-starred chef Tom Aikens as head chef of his restaurant for two years, as well as stages at Per Se and Noma. Typing Room is his first solo venture, where he showcases the best in seasonal and local British produce.

The Menu

1st Course – Braden Charlesworth: Spring onion, buttermilk, spiced aioli;

2nd Course – Lee Westcott: Celeriac, fermented mushroom, pear & hazelnut;

3rd Course – James Lowe: Raw scallop, cabbage juice and seaweed;

4th Course – Isaac McHale: Smoked Wild Sea Trout, Horseradish;

5th Course – Nuno Mendes: Iberico Pork, red pepper paste and clams;

6th Course – Andy Oliver & Mark Dobbie: Fermented rice and duck egg custard with sweet Thai snacks.

About Fields, Morris & Verdin

Fields, Morris & Verdin has evolved from a small agency and retail wine business in Chelsea through organic growth and acquisition to become one of the UK’s foremost wine importers and distributors serving the UK restaurant trade.  Since the company’s earliest days their focus has been on working with family owned wineries, whose wines echo their sense of place and who see themselves as custodians of a wine legacy for future generations. This long-term focus on working with the best, and not necessarily the most fashionable, has led to today’s unique portfolio that contains many of the world’s finest wineries from, at the last count, 14 countries.