Powered by Blogger.

Lover: How you can have the most magical and wonderful night up a clock for £85 all in, which is actually a bargain honest

Are anniversaries a thing apart from when you are married? I'm not quite sure. I mean, I have definitely been guilty of doing this, but having 6 month anniversaries of dating probably isn't a thing. But annual ones? I reckon so. As people stay together for yonks before they get married nowadays, or even don't get married at all, it seems right that there is something to mark time passed in happy monogamous relationships, because ring or no ring, finding someone who will both put you first and indeed put up with you (and someone you put first and can put up with) for significant uninterrupted lengths of time is pretty tricky. Plus it is always good in my book to have a time to be showered in gifts (or at least a gift) and to have an excuse to go on an amazingly frivolous, indulgent and special night. To that effect, on Friday night Will and I celebrated 3 years since the time I - full to the brim with cherryade and vodka - kissed him outside a pub in Putney and gave him my number. It was a debate as to whether we should relive that night by going down to Citizen Smith shotting jagerbombs and then snogging outside on the street or whether we should do something nice. In the end we chose the latter and went to the pop-up supperclub Una - which is currently taking residence in the clock tower of St. Pancras. And it was amazing.

So my phone has started doing this thing where Google makes my photos "auto amazing", so it took my relatively rubbish photo of the table set for Una and made it much better.

My expectations for Una were unbeatably high: I sort of had daydreams about me and Will taking an instagram selfie where we were hanging off one of the St Pancras clock hands like something out of Peter Pan with fireworks going off in the distance, and although that didn't happen (obviously) it was just as good.

The St. Pancras Renaissance building is probably my favourite building in London. It reminds me of Disneyland - it both looks like a building which wouldn't be out of place in Disneyland and it is also from there the train which takes you to Disneyland departs. I've always sort of thought if I won the lottery, I'd buy a place in the building, even though that seems a bit ludicrous, as Kings Cross is definitely not the nicest part of London, and for £1million+ (the last apartment in the chambers sold for £1.7M according to Right Move) you don't even get any outdoor space. The St. Pancras Renaissance was built in 1873 as a grand hotel, and indeed the 5 star Renaissance Hotel still takes up a good chunk of the building today. Most of the rooms in the hotel are new ones, at the back, but there are some suites which are still in the original building. The 1873 hotel quickly became out of date, and despite the grandeur of the building, residents couldn't use any of the facilities that were becoming a norm in rich households by the beginning of the twentieth century - if they wanted a bath there was no running water, someone would have to bring warm water to them and fill up their tin ones. The hotel shut before re-opening again, and some of the building became the "chambers" - private apartments throughout the building, and the best one, in the clock tower itself, is where the Una supper club takes place. PS. totes learnt all of that clever shiz from the owner of the clock tower himself, who swung by to say hi, and was actually very normal, for someone who owned one of the best known places in all of London.

The views from the clock tower are pretty good, but not breathtaking. The gothic architecture windows don't let you see as much as the floor to ceiling ones which are in all the new "observation restaurants", and it is only actually on the 5th floor - bearing in mind if you want to go to Aqua at the Shard or the Duck and Waffle you are on the 31st and 40th floor respectively. But what you lose in views, I think you more than make up for in atmosphere, sitting in the part of the tower which is big enough for a bell but never has had one (the clock never chimes as it strikes).

Una is Spanish for one, and the supper club is just 12 people round just one table. I've been to these sort of dos before, and assumed it would be lots of people basically having dinner in their already established groups, but just happening to sit next to some strangers. But actually, because the meal lasted for 4 hours, you actually became pretty good pals with the people next to you. I think I got lucky, sitting next to Lavonne and "Ron" (I've just made up the name Ron, as Ron, I'm really sorry but I've forgotten your name) who were an eastern medicine practioner (Lavonne - a Northern Irish reflexologist and aromatherapist) and western medicine practioner ("Ron" a Zimbabwean anaesthetist). It was lovely chatting to them about where acupuncture's place is in the NHS (for the record Lavonne acknowledges that holistic healing can't cure but relaxes the mind, and the mind can accomplish great things, whilst "Ron" claimed he had witnessed someone have their thyroid taken out - ie their throat cut open - with purely acupuncture to control the pain. Both had a great acceptance for each other's professions, which I always think of as at odds). Also, meeting people who had come to this quirky little night up a clock, meant that there were loads of like minded people with lots of fabulous recommendations for some great little things to do in London (all which will own their very own blogpost).

Anyhoo, I have waffled on for too long, so now I am going to tell you about the 7 course menu - in pictures. (It is going to change a little in January, but it will still be delicious gourmet South American influenced food by the Argentinian chef, Martin Milesi)

As I don't like mushrooms, and I couldn't really tell what this was this wasn't my favourite course, but it is one of Martin's more "conceptual" pieces - a cheesy piece of bread with a plant growing out of it - a fake potato - in soil made of olives, truffle oil and mushrooms.
This is probs not one for vegetarians, but I really liked that both pork belly and steak were on the menu, when normally I have to choose between those two. I realise the picture of the dessert (bottom right) just looks like a blob on my phone camera, but believe me that blob of chocolate is probably the best thing you will ever taste. The top left is a four corn soup. A slippery one to photograph.
CEVICHE. My new favourite thing
A meal that may have converted me to black pudding

After my (I guess) 8th glass of wine, I got brave (and stupid) and started climbing to the clock, before I realised it was impossibly high, so gave up here.

Oh also, I forget to mention the best bit - matched wines (which the waiters come round and fill when you've finished your glass) and a welcome cocktail are included in the price. And if you still want an extra tipple (which we did) then the drop dead gorgeous Gilbert Scott is just outside.

I can't remember what I drank here because I was already sloshed on the gzillion glasses of wine in Una, but it was beautiful and delicious

So I err, made a GIF of my outfit which my boyfriend says is quite vain, but I was very proud of it, and went to great lengths to get it. (I legged it across to St. Paul's to from Shoreditch when I left work at 5:30 to pick it up from Topshop, and back to Bethnal Green to get ready in a flash before meeting Will at St. Pancras at 6:45. I had to put on liquid eyeliner standing up on the tube. But it was worth it). It is also a GIF because you can't see the tummy bulge that happens when I wear tight cream dresses and eat 7 courses of food, I am moving too fast. (The fur lined dress is Topshop - it has 3/4 length sleeves; the pale blue coat is ASOS, the belt vintage and the leopard print shoes Hobbs)

Book it now, here! Now excuse me whilst I go and buy this for everyone I know and love for a Christmas present.

Like exposed brickwork and candlelight? Then you should go to Mishkin's - check out my post "Lover: Mishkin's Covent Garden, they have 3 types of macaroni cheese there"

No comments