Who is … Thomas Rode?

He is a 43-year-old TV cook, who is also the head chef at the Michelin-star restaurant Kong Hans Kælder in Copenhagen.

Where might I have seen him?
If you’ve ever watched Kanal 5, you’ve probably glimpsed this silver fox or, at the very least, heard him. He’s the smartass commentator on the Danish version of ‘Celebrity Come Dine with Me’, where he mostly mocks the various D-listers and their feeble attempts at cooking. He also has his own programme that just started on October 1.

What happens in it?
In each episode Rode invites two famous Danes (cuisine and celebrities seem to be his forte) to cook for him. Following his judgement, the loser has to do the dishes, while the winner sips champagne and chats with Rode. He might be the first chef to make a TV career without ever physically cooking anything on camera.

He seems to be modelling himself on Gordon Ramsay. Rode has confessed to flipping out on his employees in the past − in an open kitchen with an entire restaurant watching no less.

He’s even thrown rude guests out of the place, but only after yelling at them. He doesn’t seem to care that they have just spent 3,000 kroner on a meal for two.


So he’s got a bit of a temper then?
Evidently, though he seems to have calmed down quite a bit in the past few years. Maybe it’s because he’s letting his aggression out somewhere other than the workplace, as Rode has in the last few years become a fitness junkie, again a bit like Mr Ramsay. He works out every day and doesn’t eat starch, sugar or carbohydrates, so those bulging muscles under his chef’s jacket are not an optical illusion!


A body-builder chef, that’s a first!
It’s hard to imagine what a man who only eats salads and steak is doing running a French gourmet kitchen. His reason for never cooking onscreen might not be such a big mystery after all!