Preview: Come Dine With Me – The Professionals

Come Dine with Me the Professionals ©Channel4

Britain’s favourite daytime cooking competition but for the first time ever with professional chefs battling it out in Come Dine With Me – The Professionals.

The series celebrates the wonderful variety of restaurants and the amazing characters who work in them across the UK, from Glasgow, Cardiff, Newcastle, Nottingham and Bristol, to Leeds, Liverpool, Birmingham, London and Manchester. In each episode, three local restaurant duos go head-to-head as they take it in turns to host the others for a three-course dinner and prove they’ve got what it takes to win the £1000 prize. At the end of each meal, the visiting restaurant pairs score their host’s dinner out of 20, with the highest scorers overall scooping the prize. Expect stunning cooking, hilarious hosting, no shortage of drama and some secret scoring, as these restaurateurs do battle for the coveted cash prize. 

The professionals head to Birmingham, where our first hosts are seafood restaurant The Oyster Club’s head chef, Rosie, and front of house, Jess. Battling them for the £1000 prize are dad-and-daughter team Lorenzo and Jade from Caribbean pub Wildmoor Oak.

Seafood-averse Jade gets off to a bad start when oyster tasting is on the menu upon arrival. They’re joined by head chef and owner Andy and co-owner Sam of restaurant Eight, who don’t pull any punches when it comes to their critique of the food. The hosts struggle to get a word in edgeways as Lorenzo and Andy steal the limelight.

On day two, it’s the turn of Caribbean pub grub family duo Lorenzo and Jade. The large portion sizes don’t go unnoticed, and the traditional Jamaican jerk chicken goes down a treat. A round of limbo gets everyone loose and Andy and Jess battle it out for a medal. It’s a lively night, but will the lack of finesse on the food let them down?

The final night sees smart and modern restaurant Eight try their hand, having reduced their usual 12-course tasting menu down to a mere three courses. A few comments on the starter by Rosie and Jess see confident Andy knocked off-guard and tensions brew. They keep trying to impress with the expensive food, including wagyu beef, truffle and a liquid-nitrogen DIY palate cleanser, but will the nouveau cuisine portion sizes be big enough for Lorenzo who’s left scrabbling around for bar snacks?

Come Dine With Me – The Professionals – Monday at 5.00pm on Channel 4.