You may remember Theo Michaels from series ten of MasterChef. He did rather well, making it through to the semi-finals.

What you may not know is that the Harpenden cook has now thrown away his suit and become a full time chef, hosting regular pop-up dining experiences in his hometown.

The eight-course taster menu aims to give diners “elegant village food” inspired by his Greek heritage.

The setting at the Silver Palate was lovely with small intimate tables, gently lit by candles and our Australian waitress totally charmed us with her enthusiasm.

So, to the food.

The amuse bouche was a gentle start with a brandy gorgonzola cream whip and slither of date on a tiny piece of toast. I’m afraid I couldn’t taste the brandy, but I liked it.

Theo had put his own spin on a favourite of mine, Persian stuffed vine leaves for the next course, a trio of meze, which also included Greek salad tubes and octopus stifado, which I am still not a big fan of.

The ocean bowl course was perfect for seafood lovers, but fairly rich and I began to worry about finishing all eight courses.

My fears were allayed by a perfectly timed palette cleanser in the shape of a spoonful of ouzo mint granita, which left my mouth fresh and tingling and wanting more.

The menu went sharply uphill from here with lovely delicate feta and spinach balls, deep fried with a slice of watermelon – surprising and delicious.

Then it was time for the main event, French trimmed lamb, but rather a lot of minutes did tick by before it came out.

I have to admit, I don’t remember much about the kleftiko discs and greens that accompanied it as the meat was so tender and moreish.

The evening ended on a high with a perfectly balanced tarte au cirton with pecan and honey ice cream.

Sadly, we had to forgo the coffee and galombrama as after almost three hours of eating, we were rather tired and full, but very happy.

Theo’s next pop-up will be on November 21. Details: