“As I sat waiting to order, a group of businessmen in pinstripe suits went over to a cage in the corner containing several naked men, and pointed one out to the waiter. The poor bugger was immediately dragged into the kitchen – the whole restaurant could hear his screams as they cut off his legs and roasted them as a main course,” says still traumatised restaurant critic James Spindler, describing his recent horrifying experience in a well-heeled London eatery. “They shaved his severed legs and filleted out the bones, before basting them in butter and stuffing them with chestnuts! As for the ‘donor’, they cauterised his wounds before shoving him back into the cage! Mind you, I suppose my suspicions should have been aroused when I saw the finger buffet!” Spindler fled the restaurant after seeing the party of businessmen start to tuck into the roasted legs and, not surprisingly, sought out the nearest police station. The subsequent arrest of one London’s top chefs for serving human flesh in his restaurant has highlighted Britain’s growing new cannibal culture. “Whilst you might expect to find bands of cannibals roaming the UK’s sink estates, devouring unwary late-night revellers taking a short-cut after missing the last bus, the reality is that you are far more likely to encounter cannibalism amongst the genteel dinner-parties of Hampstead,” says documentary film-maker Nick Stropp, whose new film, Tasting Suburbia (a follow-up to Mondo Suburbia), claims to uncover a far-reaching conspiracy of high-placed British cannibals. “As exotic cuisine becomes ever more commonplace, the chattering classes have sought out the ultimate culinary thrill – eating human flesh! Trust me, some of the country’s leading public figures – judges, doctors, celebrities and politicians – are involved in this fad!”
Amongst the most disturbing scenes in the documentary is covertly filmed footage of one of the country’s favourite TV chefs preparing a meal for a private cannibal dinner party. “Size doesn’t matter – the biggest aren’t necessarily the tastiest! They’re often far stringier than the smaller, more tender ones. Mind you, there’s no doubt that if you want a gamier flavour they’ve got to have been well hung before serving,” he explains to an assistant as he prepares a plate of human penises, arranging them carefully on a bed of lettuce before commencing the preparation of some suitable garnish for them. “You’ve got to liquidise the testicles thoroughly, you stupid bastard! Not the freeze dried ones, twat! Sun dried are far superior!” Whilst penises are apparently served raw as an appetiser at such social gatherings, the viewer is treated to several scenes of human buttocks being cooked on trays in a gas oven. “It helps if they’ve been given a good spanking before you cook them ,it brings the blood to the surface and tenderises them a bit,” the chef explains, before carving the cooked arse cheeks into slices.
Amazingly, Stropp – disguised as a waiter – also succeeded in filming the dinner-party itself. Several well-known British TV personalities are present, along with at least one MP and a couple of prominent barristers. “These need to be accompanied by a cheeky red,” chortles the host – a well-known business tycoon – as he pours the wine whilst the roast bottoms are being served. Later, he feels moved to comment on dessert – cream covered jellied female breasts: “Breast is best isn’t just true for feeding babies, eh?” Stropp admits that he was lucky to get out of the dinner party alive. “I nearly threw up and gave myself away when I had to serve dessert,” he says. “If they’d had any inkling I wasn’t really a waiter and that they were being filmed, I could have ended up as the apéritif! Security was incredibly tight – there was no way that they wanted the public to know that members of the establishment are happily eating their fans, constituents and clients!”
However, the recent restaurant incident would seem to indicate that these establishment cannibals are becoming far less discreet about their activities. Indeed, Stropp suspects that the incident is part of a strategy to legitimise suburban cannibalism with the general public. “Let’s face it, when some nutter cracks open his mate’s skull and fries up his brains with Flora margarine in some sordid rat-infested bedsit stinking of piss, that’s characterised by the press as anit-social behaviour,” he explains. “But when it’s going on in some plush London restaurant with a shiny kitchen, patronised by well-heeled stockbrokers and media types, the ‘quality’ press start making excuses for it, and eating people suddenly seems respectable! Believe me, it was no accident that it was a restaurant critic who blew the whistle on that place – it was all part of the plan!” Stropp also finds it significant that, despite finding a total of twenty nine men held in cages, and freezers full of arms, legs, kidneys, livers, hearts and even genitalia, and arresting everyone they found in the restaurant – kitchen staff, waiters, even customers – no charges were brought by the police and all of the prisoners were released. “They claimed that it was difficult to ascertain whether any crime had actually been committed – the men in cages were apparently willing participants, and none had actually been murdered, just maimed, whilst the other body parts they discovered had been ‘donated’,” he says. “In reality, it was all just an establishment cover-up – several senior police officers are undoubtedly cannibals!”
The apparent willing participation of the victims of suburban cannibalism are examined in Tasting Suburbia, which reveals that they get in contact with prospective cannibals via a network of secret internet message boards and chat rooms. “Basically they’re people who get some kind of sexual kick out of being eaten,” explains Stropp. “In some extreme cases they’ll even eat themselves – we have footage of one guy going into a restaurant, and having his own kidney cut out and fried up, before eating it with some brown sauce!” Stropp also believes that there is a vibrant black market in amputated limbs, surgically removed organs and sometimes even complete corpses illicitly obtained from hospital mortuaries and funeral parlours. “Despite persistent rumours of vagrants and homeless people vanishing from the streets of London, it seems that these cannibals go to great lengths to avoid actually killing anyone, so as to avoid prosecution,” he says.
Nevertheless, stories still abound of illegal immigrants being brought into the country to order in order to provide more ‘exotic’ flavours for jaded cannibal palates. Perhaps the most bizarre recent development has seen members of the cannibal cult leaving their bodies to ‘culinary science’. “It’s inspired by the funeral rites practised by some primitive tribes where, when someone dies, they are cooked and eaten by their friends and family,” Stropp claims. “Former Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, for instance, was eaten by his cabinet colleagues following his tragic death. Obviously, a mock funeral was staged for the benefit of press and public, but his will had specified that he be eaten at Ten Downing Street by senior ministers. I think he was hoping that Tony Blair might choke to death on him!” Tasting Suburbia goes on general release from next Friday.