Hello, I am Rupert Cooper, a Former professional rugby player, who taught himself to cook a bit when he wasn’t at the bottom of a ruck! The passion I have for food comes a very close second to my passion for rugby and luckily for me they go hand in hand. My love for cooking comes from my mum, she is my culinary inspiration and since a very young age I have enjoyed learning from her in the kitchen. As a family we spent a lot of time in France, which is where my parents now live and run a successful bed and breakfast. It was as a child in France that food began to take on a deeper meaning to me, as I discovered an understanding for how food embodies culture.
I have been fortunate enough to play rugby not only across the country but also the world; most notably New Zealand and South Africa, where the cooking are styles were very different from that I had seen in France. These times abroad gave me one valuable take home message, being that wherever you are in the world food is the one thing that can bring people of all ages together; with this in mind I was hooked.
Becoming a professional rugby player I have had the fortune of living with some of the other professional players, where I had to create big, healthy and filling meals on a budget, forcing me to become creative and widen my repertoire. With the nature of professional sport is to keep improving and work on your skills.
Given this I’ve tried to apply this to my culinary life, seeking out opportunities at Michelin star restaurants such as Sat Bains in Nottingham, Paul Ainsworth’s No.6 in Padstow and also Rick Stein’s. So working, talking to and observing the best in the business.
In a nutshell I love food and embrace the challenge that comes with sharing that enjoyment and pleasure with strangers. My dream for when my rugby career comes to an end is of owning my own restaurant.
But until then, I present Borgia Bull.