A round of Research and Restoration Dining has just commenced. I like things which are dual purpose – very efficient.
There will now be nights and days on the town with Green & Blue people individually and then collectively with the intention of reminding all of us of what we love and aspire to. Lordship Lane is very nearly there. The extraction system must go in – the last big, niggly imperfection – and then we’ll be properly close to where we want to be. This is therefore the time for research.
Restoration of faith and hope are essential too right now. It is an expensive old thing, starting a business. Anyone thinking of doing so – make abso-fucking-lutely DAMN sure you feel a passion for it because if it sucks the very life from you; you are going to need that to keep plodding on and at times, it will feel like pretty much all you have left.
I am facing the final frontier in clearing myself of what this has cost me financially and it isn’t going to be fun. No sir.
Now, therefore, is the time for feasting before a season of stress, destitution and hopefully, eventual triumph.
ROUND ONE – Bocca di Lupo with Tom.
My love for their ice cream parlour has yet to encounter a boundary and we will sell their incredible cold things at Green & Blue from this summer. Definitely time to try the full experience then. With Tom. Longest standing Green & Blue person – pre-dating even Jude’s full time involvement so he is extra special.
Things we loved
1. The bar. Of course we loved the bar. Stylish; long enough to house a good range of people to watch and nudge up against (neighbour to my left was quite worth nudging, actually). Good height to eat off and plenty roomy enough for many plates.
We had quite a few plates.
2. The chefs. We loved the chefs. Brilliantly focused; producing incredible food centimetres away from us. The grill was amazing - huge hunks of sirloin; sea bream caked in blackened salt, fat pork chops thick with honey and rosemary marinade; all slapped down, cooked to perfection and then sent out over the pass. We were mesmerised.
Their extraction system was more amazing still. We gazed at it in, silent, envious awe for quite some time.
3. The tripe – succulent and flavoured to perfection with guanciale, chilli and tomato – the blood orange salad with oregano; the Trofie with cuttlefish and its ink and the Sanguinaccio to finish.
This (for those of you who do not make or consume such things on a regular basis) is a pate of pig’s blood and chocolate.
Tom loved it. I had a spoonful which yes, had an undeniable deliciousness to it but it also had an unmistakeable piggy bloodyness to it which meant that one taste was ample.
4. Our very own chef Simon was there too on a date night. We had not planned to meet up but I turned around at one point and there he was. This was wonderful surprise. We had a brilliant Green & Blue moment in the middle of Soho with inspiration coming off the three of us like you can’t believe.
Things we did not love as much.
1. The wine list. This felt especially wrong with so much other greatness going on. It reminded me of how many exceptional nights I have had at the bar at Terroir. – similar to this for all the best reasons but here, missing an essential ingredient. Even a single glass of something pure and alive lifts the whole experience immeasurably and it is sorely missed when enjoying food this much.
Tom decided to try a glass of sparkling Garganega. It was not good to a profound degree; the flat, leaden flavours entirely at odds with the food and atmosphere. He gave up and drank beer. I drank water.
2. The Courgettes Trifolate. Compared to the sensationally fresh, clean flavours of most of the vegetable dishes and salads we tried this was lacking in any defining character.
3. The Canarino I ordered. Canarino is not hot water with slices of lemon. It simply is NOT. This is a whole other flavour situation to that of a wafer thin slice of lemon peel in hot water. I always expect Italian places to know this.
A surprisingly large number do not.
Clearly, the love far outweighed the rest. This is a good place run by a great team and we know how much hard work that takes. Respect. BIG respect.
One dessert is rarely sufficient for
dedicated researchers and so after settling up, we crossed
And we agreed that we are not nearly done reaching.