Archive for August 19th, 2006

Saturday in West London

I claim no originality in the idea for this pic – but as some readers may not read Private Eye and Eye did not publish the cartoon which inspired this variant on their website – I have done a variation of the idea for you. The original, worded differently (“Ladies and gentlemen…the bride and groom will now cut the wedding coke”), amused me.

Food writers and restaurant reviewers. For some reason I find many food writers and restaurant reviewers irritating. I’m not a ‘foodie’ (I do enjoy food and a penchant for reds is quite apparent, perhaps from some of my writing) so I find some reviews over the top.

Imagine if there was a restaurant called The Charon? This is the sort of overblown claptrap produced by some foodie hyperbolators. I prefer the writers who tell it straight

The Charon, 1234 Greek St, Soho
There’s great excitement at Soho’s latest bijou restaurant, The Charon. Head Chef, Marco Worral Charon, has found the last ever supply of the mouthwatering fungi Toscana while on holiday near Siena. He won’t reveal where he finds these extravagantly expensive, but delicious, relatives of the humble button mushroom – all he can say is that there are no more to be found anywhere in Tuscany this season. Chef braises the mushrooms first in a rare Chianti, then sautees them off gently in garlic butter, before sprinkling them with a fine dusting of ligurian sea salt and black Florentine pepper – to a recipe first used by Michelangelo when he carved the famous statue of David. Three of the Euro (€) sized mushrooms arrived on a pristine white plate, slightly off centre, with just a drizzle of olive oil and an exquisitely shaped piece of raw carrot, carved to look like a ‘V’ sign. My dining companion, a particularly exacting chartered accountant from one of the Big Four, told me that it was a long time since he had such an orgasmic experience. I bit into the delicately flavoured fungi. I had to agree. I gasped, such was the fragrance, the taste, like foie gras melting on the tongue. We drank a fine Montepulciano, a wine of such depth that I could not see my dining companion through the glass when I held it up to the light to look at its legs. It would have been sacrilege to have taken further food from this great chef – a redundancy.

Sadly, you won’t be able to experience this Charonic feast for yourselves, because, all the fungi Toscana have been eaten by restaurant reviewers – an ephemera…which reminded me of the death of a beautiful yellow butterfly when I was eating at an exclusive restaurant set on the hills of Eze on the Cote d’Azur above St Jean Cap Ferrat, but a week ago. (£200 for 2 with wine)

The sun has broken through. Pakistan are giving England a hard time at The Oval – which is a good thing, because Pakistan are playing superb cricket – and it is time for me to prepare myself for an evening of conversation at The Swan. Perhaps Codebreaker will be there?

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