The most wonderful thing happens when you come across something that has been mulling around your head that actually exists and is more accessible than you had thought. For me Supper clubs are it!
The whole notion of announcing your dinner, designing a menu, sourcing the ingredients, finding a venue, getting willing helpers, hoping people will come, and not cocking it up is in some micro-way the same as having you own restaurant. With a lot less risk. If you think of all the chefs that you admire and have seen in the flesh doing what they do best ever wondered if you could do the same? You can and people do.
I got in touch with the now infamous Ms. Marmitelover via her blog The English can Cook soon after her first week in business. She welcomed my request to help immediately and off to Kiburn I went. Now on its fourth Saturday Ms. Marmitelover is transporting her diners to Mexico by way of Brondesbury. Other unique dining experiences such as Horton Jupiter’s in Newington Green proves the abundance.
(Marmites homely culinary HQ)
Many supper clubs are popping up all over the place, and long may they thrive. At a time when cash is tight, people are more knowledgeable about food and the abilty to quickly disseminate information via t’internet the climate is perfect for a move away from more traditional food experiences.
Its not that the proprietors of these supper clubs want to undermine the restaurant industry in some anarchic way but are increasingly finding that the reaction they get from the diner is that it offers so much more that just a more reasonably priced meal. Social exchange with like mined others, an insight in the home of others etc.
Being given a whole set menu designed by an enthusiast is, in my mind, vastly better than the tedium of glaring at monotonous bound menu with needless subdivisions that are based more on price and fashion with a keen eye for the profit margin. Also if you in someone else’s house being served by their friends and family who cares if the service is not attentive and timing is not too rigorous. The informality and personalisation irons out all the usual gripes of conventional dining.
Seek and devour your local supper club… feed the phenomenon!