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The Tides of Christmas Past

Whence old England meets New England

Sticky Toffee Pudding - Purchase our December issue for the full recipe!

Sticky Toffee Pudding - Purchase our December issue for the full recipe!

With the festivities of Yule­tide cheer just around the corner, ’tis once again the season to eat, drink and be merry. And, as food is always on our minds here at Vero Beach Magazine, we thought we’d ask two highly accomplished chefs who grew up on opposite sides of the pond to share their most treasured Christmas memories. 

Veteran chefs Leanne Kelleher of Water­town, Connecticut, and Bruce Turner of Leeds, England, are the tour de force behind the popular Tides restaurant on Cardinal Drive. Together they have been raising the bar in innovative dining ever since Kelleher first opened the doors in 2000. “I just stopped by to see if I could lend a hand,” Turner says of those early days. “And 17 years later, I am still here.”

And while they share an edacious passion for flawlessly executed dishes culled from the freshest ingredients, their recollections of Christmases on two different continents are as different as their accents. Is it Santa Claus or Father Christmas? Does he shimmy down the chimney to a plate of cookies and milk or mince pies and brandy? Why is a cracker pulled and not served with cheese? And just what is bread sauce anyway? To answer these questions and more, Kelleher and Turner took time out of their busy days to exchange recollections of Christmastime at home with their families.