Saturday, 1 January 2011

New Year's Eve Supper Club, the aftermath

Singing Auld Langs Syne, New Year's Eve supper club
Everybody stood up at the moment of midnight and sang Auld Lang Syne.

Sometimes, when I'm clearing up the tables the day following a dinner, I see evidence of what my guests have been up to during the meal. Whether they are anxious, drunk, flirtatious, have played with their food, been entertained or bored, what I cannot glean on the night from my sporadic journeys out of the kitchen, I discover the next morning when tidying away. I've found napkins twisted into animal shapes, a heart shape traced into a pile of salt, noughts and crosses scribbled on a piece of paper, items of clothing, mobiles, wallets, undrunk bottles of wine, fruit casually carved into shapes and examples of 'table art'. On New Year's eve, the combination of champagne corks, wire cages and gingerbread led to the example pictured below, a rather charming candelabra.

champagne cork sculpture,  new years eve supper club

Seven thirty pm is the usual dinner arrival time at The Underground Restaurant. Seven thirty pm on New Year's Eve: the room was set up, everything prepped, candles flickering, table linen glowing starchily white, cutlery gleaming, plates warmed, champagne opened, fire lit, waitresses fastened up in their black dresses and vintage pinnies, me with my heels on, my feathers and glitter in my hair, my big 'Upstairs, Downstairs' pressed cotton apron. 7.30 ticked past. Matt Day from Mumm Champagne suggested drinking a glass each. By 8, no guests had arrived. On my third glass of champagne I started to wonder if I had the wrong night. At 8.15pm, I ran to the computer, checked wegottickets.com, yes it was the 31st of December, but ah! I'd said arrival time was 8.30, clever me, as it's a long night. By this time we were all a bit drunk.
The door bell rung and guests piled in, shrugging off coats and scarves, faces happy and excited. I always say the dress code is 'dressy' for I love to see the ladies' dresses. Sequins and ballgowns, vintage frocks, petticoats, kilts, starched shirts and bowties, Sunday best, night on the tiles outfits have been turfed from the back of the wardrobe for a night out at The Underground Restaurant and it gladdens my heart. I only wish I had a red carpet and flashing paparazzi to do proper justice to the glamour of my guests.
I often ask guests as they are leaving: 'Which course did you like best?'. When each of them answers differently I think the food in general must have been a success. The New Year's Eve menu was specifically matched with different Mumm champagnes, here are the pictures:

cauliflower soup, new years eve supper club
A seared scallop topped with creme fraiche and Riofrio caviar and microherbs.
cauliflower soup, new years eve supper club
Cauliflower cream soup was poured around it. A great match with the non vintage cramant Mumm champagne.
Roasted corn on the cob with flavoured butters: olive, piquillo pepper and lime, truffle and maple. "Which butter flavour did you prefer?" I asked a guest. "Maple and olive" he said. Guests were mixing and matching their own butters.New Year's Eve supper club
Roasted corn on the cob with flavoured butters: olive, piquillo pepper and lime, truffle and maple. "Which butter flavour did you prefer?" I asked a guest. "Maple and olive" he said. Guests were mixing and matching their own butters.


Tuna steak with a watermelon, papaya, strawberry, avocado, lime, basil, coriander, mint salsa. With micro herbs and tequila dressing.
Tuna steak with a watermelon, papaya, strawberry, avocado, lime, basil, coriander, mint salsa. With micro herbs and tequila dressing.
Baked Langres cheese (from Mons at Borough) with Marmite sourdough soldiers.
Baked Langres cheese (from Mons at Borough) with Marmite sourdough soldiers. "More soldiers?" I asked one table. "A whole army please!" they replied. I don't know why I bother with any other food, marmite on toast is always a hit.
New Year's Eve supper club
Waiting, where is everyone? Waitress Jess and my youngest guest who was perfectly behaved.
New Year's Eve supper club
My most beautiful guest!  Olivia Poppy, one month old.
New Year's Eve supper club
This lady asked to take home the roofs of the house for her children, cute! I used to love it when my mum and dad brought us home presents from a night out.
New Year's Eve supper club
Smashing the gingerbread house, New Year's Eve supper club
Smashing!
 The Aftermath...the ruins of my gingerbread slum... New Year's Eve supper club
 The Aftermath...the ruins of my gingerbread slum...

Thanks very much to Matt Day and Mumm champagne for sponsoring and providing this New Year's Eve dinner with their amazing selection of champagnes. What a treat! And proof that champagne does match wonderfully with food.
champagne for new years eve supper club,
Matt Day opened all the champagne at the beginning: "Won't it go flat?" I asked. "No, good champagne will stay bubbly for a week" he replied.

5 comments:

  1. Loving the gingerbread houses! Bet they made a right mess. Happy New Year x

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  2. What a lovely menu and a wonderful evening it looks to have been. A great way to end the year and start a New Year with.

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  3. Went to this last night and thoroughly enjoyed it! Fantastic food & entertaining company. Piquillo pepper butter won hands down IMHO!

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  4. Looks like a deliciously wicked evening! Love the idea of the butters and the salsa! Yum! xxx

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  5. Looks like a smashing New Year! x

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