“Andaman is a very big island. The people have no king. They are idolaters and live like wild beasts…You may take it for a fact that all the men of this island have heads like dogs, and teeth and eyes like dogs; for I assure you that the whole aspect of their faces is that of big mastiffs. They are a very cruel race: whenever they can get hold of a man who is not one of their kind, they devour him.”
I know you must be eager for an explanation; you must be dying to know what these opening lines are all about. Well, I shall explain. The above is an extract from Il Milione, also (better) known as The Travels of Marco Polo, the chronicle of the eponymous fourteenth century Venetian trader/explorer who gained everlasting fame for his trailblazing travels along the Silk Road between the occident and Orient. It was on one of these travels that Signor Marco noticed, if not actually visited, Andaman.
Be patient; here comes the important/relevant bit. Thus, aware of this trivia titbit, I was left curious, surprised and, if honest, maybe a little scared when Dieter Müller chose to name his new London venture Andaman. Then it hit me, Müller, a German gentleman, actually a German chef with three Michelin stars, is trying to be funny, but he just cannot help but do it in awkward, formidable German fashion.