My friend Tori and I have a little tradition of celebrating her birthday together with dinner and a few glasses of champers…we love spending time together talking about the days when we both worked in publishing and catching up on all the latest. So when I was invited to check out Thirty Six by Nigel Mendham at Duke’s Hotel it seemed like the ideal place for a chilled out dinner.
Following a meeting at Waterstone’s, I dashed through the back streets of St James’ to meet my friend, it was freezing cold and the twinkling lights on the front of the luxury hotel could not have been more welcome.
Being a luxury hotel addict, and London dweller, I was surprised that I’d never visited the hotel that was historically a retreat for royalty, politicians and members of the arts. The upstairs bar was very busy and I was pointed towards the sanctuary of The PJ Bar.
The lounge was a gorgeously feminine space with lime green sofas and highlights of raspberry pink.
Any of my friends reading this will see why I like it, as the colour palette is identical to my own living room.
And there was a whole wall for selfies!!
And of course, a glass each of that iconic champagne. We settled down into the plush sofa with it’s sofa cushions and Tori opened her present and card while we caught up on life! Both of us had some pending travel plans with Tori heading off to Amsterdam for her husband’s birthday and my trip to Istanbul coming up.
The gorgeous bar is right next to the restaurant so once we’d quaffed our bubbles we headed next door.
The restaurant was a little quiet early on, but soon filled out a bit. Now I must say if you’re looking for a party atmosphere, Thirty Six is not the place for you, though it is ideal for a relaxed and quiet night and the perfect place for taking the parents.
Tori and I would be sampling the new rustic menu starting with an amuse bouche of apple and celery soup.
The soup was deliciously creamy and the perfect way to warm my cockles from the freezing cold night.
Venison with celeriac, barley pearls and black pudding was delicious and you can see from the photo how beautifully cooked it was.
Tori, went for the chocolate fondant for dessert, I regret not getting a photo of the perfectly molten chocolate centre. Just imagine the famous M & S advert and you’ll get the picture.
My dessert actually tasted a bit like Christmas. It was a gorgeous combination of winter ingredients, spiced plums, ginger and iced yogurt.
Thank you Thirty Six for lovely food, great bubbly and for looking after us on a special birthday night!
Thirty Six by Nigel Mendham
Dukes, St James’s Place
Call 0207 491 4840 to make a reservation
Our dinner at Thirty Six was complimentary