I remember when I first moved to South West London and my cousin took me to a bar in Chelsea. “Oh my god” she heard me mutter as we walked in. “Great isn’t it” she nodded at me. No. It wasn’t great, it was awful, full of tossers, one of whom said “it was great to see Asians drinking in Chelsea”.
This experience happened time and time again. I would be taken to a “fabulous place darling” and leave £100s poorer and bored. My sister and I deemed it The Emperor’s New Clothes experience. It felt like Londoners were duped into believing what was a great place and went along like drones and unable to see that in fact, the club/restaurant/bar was utter utter pants with a capital P!
Fast forward to Sunday Brunch yesterday. I was taken to Cecconi’s in Mayfair. I don’t know why but I could just tell it was going to be rubbish. There was just something about it that with hindsight I can’t put my finger on it.
I had just sat in my seat and began being hassled for my order. I mean I literally just sat down! We were glared at until we ordered tea and water. The waiters interrupted us several times to ask if we wanted wine. We just didn’t want wine, what was their problem? After being served the blandest tea I have ever been served in my entire life (previously the worst tea ever cost me about 5p in Moscow train station) we ordered starters. My starter of breaded mozarella was gross. First of all, why would I want to eat seven mozarella balls? Seven? Really? When I cut into them all this watery crap oozed out. Then I chewed and chewed on the cheese and swallowed down with water. A small dish of cold watery tomato sauce accompanied it. My main of crab ravioli was next. I started panicking that it would be too large a dish but when it arrived I thought wow, I could easily eat 5 ravioli bits. There was shell in the pasta and the sauce was watery oily and cold. My plate was also cold. Who told these guys that crab goes with basil? Urgh. I left half of it as couldn’t be bothered to eat it. Our sides were similarly wet. Why was everything SO wet? Wet cold spinach, I didn’t even touch it. Drippy courgettes that were so soggy that I left them too (usually we fight over those!) and although the roast potatoes were nice we only got 5 teeny tiny potatoes for around one million pounds (or thereabouts).
The crowd in there go there in spite of the food not because of it. It is botox heaven with tanned silver foxed guys and women half their age. I did a little people watching in there and wondered whether the women actually physically fancy the saggy grandad they were sitting opposite and then turned my attention to admiring their handbags, shoes and plastic surgery. Bizarre. It is a world I don’t belong in and I lamented the fact that when we actually left our bill was close to £100 and I would have had more delicious food in good ole Carluccios!
Go here if you are such an old dude that you have zero tastebuds or if you are a beautiful lady able to have sex with Grandpops for a fabulous handbag.