The Hairy Bikers are David Myers and Simon King, two northern blokes with a passion for cooking and food. The pair began their TV careers working behind the scenes, Si as a first assistant director and locations manager for film and television and Dave as a BBC make-up artist specialising in prosthetics. It was on the set of a TV drama that they first met and became friends.
The cooks first appeared in front of the camera for their pilot Hairy Bikers series, filmed in Portugal. No strangers to travel before they started working together, the lads embraced the opportunity to seek out new dishes from around the globe when their show took off. Since then, they’ve travelled to Namibia, India, Vietnam, Argentina and Mexico as well as sampling the cuisines of places nearer to home, such as Ireland and the Isle of Man.
They have fronted the series’ The Hairy Bikers’ Cookbook, The Hairy Bikers Ride Again, The Hairy Bakers, The Hairy Bikers’ Food Tour of Britain and The Hairy Bikers Mums Know Best, Hairy Bikers Meals On Wheels, Hairy Biker’s Best of British and The Hairy Biker’s Bakeation for BBC Two and The Hairy Biker’s Mississippi Adventure for Good Food.
Their TV shows are a mixture of cookery and travelogue, using a similar format and style to that previously associated with Keith Floyd, including the habit of frequently referring to the cameraman and other crew. Most shows feature the pair riding motorcycles.
The pair have appeared on several episodes of Saturday Kitchen on the BBC, as well as on Richard & Judy on Channel 4. They both appeared on a celebrity chefs special of The Weakest Link and in the première episode of James Martin’s Brittany with Saturday Kitchen presenter James Martin.
A six part series titled ‘The Hairy Bikers: Mums Know Best’ commenced broadcast in early January 2010 on BBC2.
On October 25, 2010 a new 40 episode series, The Hairy Bikers’ Cook Off, was launched on BBC2. The programme includes a cook off between two families, and celebrity guests.
In March 2012, Good Food commissioned The Hairy Biker’s Mississippi Adventure, the duo’s first series for the channel. UKTV gave a description of the series: “In this ultimate food and music pilgrimage, the perennially popular Hairy Bikers are getting back in the saddle as they explore the length of the iconic Mississippi river in America in pursuit of the delicious roots of soul food and Southern music.”