Masterchef quarter finalists team up for Christmas pop-up restaurant in Harrogate

Two former MasterChef contestants, who reached the quarter finals, are teaming up to run a Christmas pop-up restaurant from the tipi at the Cedar Court Hotel in Harrogate.

Friday, 26th November 2021, 3:57 pm
Updated Friday, 26th November 2021, 4:05 pm
A Christmas pop-up tipi restaurant is coming to Harrogate this festive season at the Cedar Court Hotel

Jo Mills, from Leeds, who appeared on the BBC cooking show in 2021, met Chris Hale from the 2016 series on a Facebook group for former MasterChef contestant and with Chris being a friend of the hotels groups, a unique opportunity was born.

The pop up will be offering ‘festive tapas’, including turkey and sage bon bons with cranberry dip and mini nut roasts with candied carrots.

It will be served from 2pm till 10pm starting from Thursday, December 9 to Saturday, December 19 and will be in collaboration with Magic Rock Brewing Co. and Harrogate Tipple Ltd.

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On Sunday, December 12 and 19, there will be a two-course bottomless brunch.

On December 20, 21 and 22, there will be an Afternoon Tea with Elsa, the character from Disney’s Frozen, for families.

Stewart Moss, Group Director of Sales & Marketing at Cedar Court, said: "We’ve long been fans of Chris’s food at Cedar Court, and we’d had some exciting plans drawn up with him for 2020 which, for obvious reasons, didn’t happen, so to now be able to finally do something so unique together is superb.

"Our Tipi is a special venue and what Chris and Jo have created is really exciting."

Chris Hale said: "I love the Tipi at Cedar Court as it’s just a great place to come and relax in, so I wanted the food to reflect that; Jo’s passion is tapas, so I thought, let’s lead on that, but make it festive tapas, so lots of little bites.

"I think we have got a really nice balanced menu and the desserts are particularly theatrical.

"For me it’s the end of the meal, and it’s the bit people take away with them.

"There is an edible Christmas wreath, which is our festive take on an Eton mess, with meringue, ginger, cinnamon, pomegranate, and molasses.

"We are also doing a panettone tiramisu garden, which will be presented as a snowy garden scene and will feature meringue mushrooms and edible snow and flowers.

"Those are the two that are probably the most 'Instagrammable'.”

Wayne Topley, Managing Director at Cedar Court Hotels Yorkshire, said: "After an amazing summer of Afternoon Teas, early evening cocktails and a real wealth of events ranging from Christenings to family parties, we are now really excited to see the launch of the next incarnation of our Tipi on the Stray.

"Many people it seems are choosing casual dining with friends this year instead of the traditional and larger scale Christmas parties, so we are truly proud to present this residency.

"It will be our first ‘pop up' and we are all very happy that we have Chris and Jo on board.

"What the ‘MasterChef’s’ have created is a seriously exciting food and drink offering that is, in the spirit of Cedar Court Hotels, a real first for Harrogate and we are so proud to be hosting this."

To buy tickets and for more information, visit