Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Saturday 6 December 2008

now i’m depleted
eating in unreal splendour
with the hoi-polloi

The Wise Woman of Wigan, bless her, took us out to Gary Rhodes restaurant at the Cumberland Hotel at Marble Arch. As usual, it was a very posh and relaxing experience. A succession of waiters talked us through the food and wine and the cocktail barman even came to the table to divulge the secret of his James Bond Martini. It’s not the sort of place I could really afford to go to on a regular basis, as a bottle of wine would no doubt pay two month’s council tax in some areas, but it’s well worth the additional expense once in a while.
Following canapes of grilled cheese toastie sandwiches and smoked eel goujons, I started off with pork belly and langoustine with sauteed pears (I think), followed by saddle of rabbit stuffed with foie gras.
At that point somebody (probably me) mentioned Britney Spears and I went into a gesticulating rant which is probably why, when I accidentally struck one of the (thankfully empty) wine glasses, it somersaulted into the air and plummeted to the carpet where it shattered. I explained to the waiter who was cheerfully brushing up the remains that it was probably the mention of Britney Spears that caused it to spontaneously explode. I suspect that Rhodes either uses brainwashing techniques or employs Mormons, since his staff are the most unremittingly cheerful people in the world.
I’m not sure if it was the Moscow Mules or the red wine, but I’m stumped if I can remember what I had for dessert. I remember describing it as a culinary adventure, a triumph of design and a masterpiece of something else, but the details elude me.
Later, quite impressed by the wine-glasses, I looked them up on t’internet and discovered that each one costs seventeen pounds. I could get three bottles of Snapper Cove in Marks and Spencer for that!

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