Notes on an Anniversary

This weekend marked one year since M and I made our relationship official, and so of course we had made big plans to celebrate. I wasn’t planning on really documenting the occasion on this blog because I didn’t want my camera to be the third wheel & I’m not one for public gushiness, but we had such a good time I couldn’t resist a quick post.

After a LOT of deliberation and no less than three reservations made, we ended up changing our minds last minute and booking a table at Wright Brothers in Soho. Turned out this was a great decision; the atmosphere was exactly what we were hoping for, the whole place smelt like seafood (in a good way) and, at our table hidden away above Kingly Court, I could easily have kidded myself we were in France.

We couldn’t not order oysters in a restaurant that calls itself an Oyster house, so to start, we went for 3 with chilli jam, and chilli prawns to match. The prawns in particular were great, and M (a bit of a seafood connoisseur himself) declared them amongst the best he’s ever eaten. It was my first time trying oysters and I think the chilli jam probably made for a perfect “beginner’s oyster.”

For the main event, we shared a steak & lobster sharing plate. My only criticism would be that it wasn’t really big enough to comfortably share. However, the steak was absolutely faultless and we both enjoyed the lobster: it was our first time trying it, as a warm up for our hypothetical future trip to Burger and Lobster.

Other than the food, the service was swift and friendly (enough so that I let myself be talked into trying calvados…never again) and the wine was good. Embarrassingly, we polished off a sharing dessert AND  a sticky toffee pudding on the side – for the record, the sharing crumble there IS big enough to share, and the bread & cinnamon ice cream it comes with is dreamy – and headed out into the streets of Soho to find somewhere for a drink.

This is where the night’s big triumph comes into play. Quite by chance, we stumbled across Cocktail Trading Co, which I had read about earlier in the week as one of January’s “ones to watch.” Located in the basement of Central and Co, this bar might just be my new favourite place in London. We were greeted by a ludicrously friendly team, nabbed two seats at the bar and spent a good few minutes in awe watching the bartenders expertly managing the crazy rush of orders before flicking through the tiny, brown paper menu.

Cocktail Trading Co has received a fair amount of press already for its inventive cocktail vessels and for good reason: the four drinks we sampled came in a bell, a porcelain owl, a welly, and a legit takeout container. Those noodles? Real, bacon-flavoured (but vegetarian friendly), dried noodles. My favourite garnish though was the shortbread, which I was encouraged to dip into the cocktail itself. Surprisingly, it works.

Perhaps most importantly, the drinks actually taste good, with my favourite being the “#festivalchic” – the welly one – and as I mentioned, the service was second to none. I will most definitely be back – I just hope all of London doesn’t discover this secret too quickly!

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