Not content with building a jelly skyline for the city, plying Londoners with cocktails the size of a house, or getting us to vote with our stomachs, jellymongering duo Bompas and Parr launched A Complete History of Food last night in Belgrave Square.
Serving dishes paired with cocktails inspired by medieval times through to today, this is a cheaper – although still by no means cheap – way to experience some of London’s finest drinking and dining establishments. As anyone who saw Heston Blumenthal’s Feasts series will probably expect, the dishes are touted as being “historic with a contemporary twist”, though you’re more likely to come away with gout than a scholarly understanding of culinary history.
Whilst Saf‘s Matt Downes makes an inspired and delicious attempt at balancing the body’s humours in an eel-surrounded galleon, some of the other rooms became a little unstuck in time; Bistrotheque’s duck leg with black champagne sauce – although carefully considered and perfectly balanced in flavour – felt a little too contemporary to be served inside an iguanadon, whilst conversely the Gauthier/Lounge Bohemia pairing of meat Ferrero Rocher and a deconstructed champagne cocktail (for which the bubbles are served separately from the liquid – you have to drink it to believe it) representing Contemporary London had a distinctly Eighties feel.
Whether to eat beforehand is a dilemma though, since you’ll have quaffed a good three or so cocktails and worked up an appetite on a bouncy castle style stomach more inflated than Lord Two Jabs’ before you hit anything as substantial as an actual meal. On the other hand, you wouldn’t want to ruin your appetite for that duck, let alone the whale vomit and jelly afterwards. Word to the wise (and hungry) – it’s a long stagger from that square to the nearest kebab joint. Just saying.
Tickets are ALL now sold out – if you’re one of the lucky few ticket holders but have trouble finding it, keep an eye out for the Italian Cultural Institute‘s blancmange-like glass mushroom cloud – it’s on the opposite corner. Don’t ask the bobby outside the Turkish Embassy for directions, he’s got a shiny new iPhone and isn’t afraid to use it.