Marco Pierre White's Special Technique For Adding Wine To A Sauté Pan

Born in 1961, British celebrity chef Marco Pierre White is an elder statesman in his community, and like other accomplished celebrity chefs with decades of experience, he is becoming less focused on fine dining guests and more focused on the average person.

White started his classical training under the tutelage of Albert and Michel Roux, according to the website for White's Dublin, Ireland steakhouse. In 1987, White opened his first restaurant, Harveys, where he employed a young Gordon Ramsay — now an instantly recognizable celebrity chef himself. In 1995, a 33-year-old White became the youngest chef to ever be awarded three Michelin stars for The Restaurant Macro Pierre White in the Hyde Park Hotel in London (via The New Yorker).

While White may have been chasing Michelin stars in his youth, the older, more mature White recently opened Mr. White's: a restaurant in London's Leicester Square with tourist-friendly prices. "I think what's important is to make everything affordable," he told the Evening Standard in October 2021. "I like when I can walk into restaurants and every sector of society is in them."

A new angle on cooking with wine

In addition to opening wallet-friendly restaurants, White is also reaching the average person online by demonstrating how to cook classic dishes using the proper techniques. In his cooking demonstration for chicken chasseur (via Marco Recipes), White shows viewers how to cook the classic French dish also known as hunter's chicken. Midway through cooking, the recipe involves making a sauce from the chicken fat rendering in a sauté pan, diced shallots, brandy, and white wine. The chef's special technique for adding the wine (or any alcoholic liquid) prescribes pouring it around the edge of the sauté pan and letting it run toward the middle.

"Because if you splash it over the chicken," White explains, "raw alcohol will stay on top of the chicken." White then recommends tasting the wine in the pan after a bit of cooking to see if the acidity has been removed by the cooking process "so the natural sweetness and flavor of the wine comes through."

The remainder of the dish comes together with the addition of tomato juice, diced tomatoes, browning sauce, chicken bouillon, button mushrooms, tarragon, and parsley. The result is a classic French dish that is easy to make, yet feels just a bit elegant — perhaps because of White's trade secret.