Sunday, 27 April 2014

The Ladywell Supper Club

Wild garlic soup with hazelnut pesto and cornbread
Being so on trend I heard about supper clubs rather late. I love the idea of someone cooking lovely, homely food in their own houses for a group of strangers, but by the time I caught up with the trend they'd become more commercial operations. I loved Mike and Ollie's dinner in particular, but being run by a foodie professionals it didn't have some of the innocence I'd expected.

Now that the London food scene has moved onto street food I thought my chance to experience, my idea, of a supper cub had gone. So when I saw a new Ladywell Supper Club offering dinners at £25 and BYO booze I booked at once (or prompted Becks to book, as may have been the case).
Crab, fennel and blood orange salad
The first thing I noticed was how beautifully set up the dining room was. The tables were covered in parcel paper, with the outlines of plates drawn at each place setting, cutlery in small homemade pouches and plenty of tea lights.

The night started with a honey, rhubarb, grapefruit and gin cocktail and a couple of tasty little canap├ęs. I'm not usually a fan of grapefruit, finding it a bit sour, but it worked well with the honey and gin.

Our first proper course was the wild garlic soup with hazelnut pesto and cornbread. It was a good start too with the wild garlic thankfully sufficiently mellow so that it didn't blow our heads off. The warm homemade cornbread reminded me that I need to make my cornbread recipe again sometime.
Cutlet and confit of lamb, potato gratin and port jus
Next was the crab, fennel and blood orange salad. Topped with a generous amount of crab the salad had a good balance of flavours. The blood orange helped bring everything together and I could have done with a second slice.

We had a bit of a wait for the main event of the evening, a cutlet and confit of lamb, with potato gratin and a port jus. The wait was the only blemish on an otherwise excellent dish. The lamb cutlet was cooked to a perfect pink. The single asparagus spear and to a lesser extent, the twenty one peas, looked the part in presentation terms but did leave me slightly wondering what the point was.
Lemon tart with vanilla cream and candied rhubarb
Dessert was a lemon tart with vanilla cream and candied rhubarb. It was a good little lemon tart, with little being the operative word. I would have happy eaten a slice double the size.

Thinking that there was only one El in the Ladywell food business, I thought the night was going to be hosted by the former owner of the Ladywell Deli. (My assumption, no misleading advertising.) It turned out that it was hosted by Ellen another local whose name happens to share the first couple of letters.

This was a fun supper club experience. Good food at reasonable prices and the opportunity to meet some other locals over a glass of wine.

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