AMERICAN WAY: Let's say those same people are visiting you. Where do you put them up?
OLIVER: That's very hard. Of course, there's loads of posh hotels in London. Are they glamorous? Of course. Are they expensive? Of course. Are they cool? No. They're big, horrible, golden palaces in god knows where. But if it has to be in London, I would probably send them to one of the Schrager hotels [Sanderson or St. Martins Lane]. Ian Schrager is American and cool, but his accountants are too stingy. The rooms and toilets are all too small. Other than that, though, I can't give him enough praise.
AMERICAN WAY: What if you and Jools want to get away from the restaurant, your own kitchen, the kids? Where do you go for a romantic weekend?
OLIVER: We would go to a place called Babington House, in a beautiful part of Somerset. It's owned by the guy who owns Soho House in New York, and it's the coolest old English country house. The place is beautiful, clean, and fresh; the staff is lovely; and the food is excellent. You can go on long walks, enjoy the fresh air and big hills, swim, get treatments, go shooting. It's perfect for pampering.
AMERICAN WAY: Wait a minute. You don't strike me as the shooting type.
OLIVER: I've only just started doing it, although I've been cooking game and pheasant and woodcock and god knows what for 12 years now. Understand that I am not particularly turned on by killing things. However, I'm not so pretentious that I won't admit that we are on the top of the food chain and that we do eat venison and deer and chicken and beef. As long as what I kill will be eaten and cooked with a bit of love, I am happy to shoot it. Beyond that, though, I've been doing lots of clay-pigeon shooting. Sometimes I get lessons at the West London Shooting School. The tutors there are great. Mine is the European side-by-side shotgun champion.