As much fun as I had exploring London with my son and doing about a million different kid-friendly activities, sometimes you just need a GUDO, or, Grown Ups Day Out! Can I get an Amen from all the parents? Y’all know what I mean! So, while my son had his own adventure day at Ursuline Prep’s Camp Beaumont, the grown ups set out to play in the city. Our first stop was lunch at Marco Pierre White’s London Steakhouse Company in Chelsea. I was so excited about this restaurant, y’all! Why? Well, for starters, Marco Pierre White is a total culinary rock star who changed the food game as soon as he came on the scene. He began his culinary training in London at only 16 years old and by the time he was 33 he had already become the youngest chef ever to be awarded not one, not two, but THREE Michelin stars. His accolades go on for miles and he has worked with, and trained, some of the most brilliant members of the culinary world. Trust me on this…you seriously need to try his food. I can say without hesitation that London Steakhouse Co. was one of the biggest foodie highlights of my entire time in London. The restaurant itself is somewhat unassuming…small, elegant, and classy without being pretentious. The menu is narrow and focused, lending itself to perfection, and the staff are knowledgeable, friendly, and meticulous when it comes to service. We started with cocktails, followed by a three-course meal including hors d’oeuvres, entrees, and desserts.
I had the Captain White cocktail, a combination of dark rum, peach puree, and vanilla. The flavor profile was just slightly tart but well balanced without being overly strong. For a starter, I chose the Scottish smoked salmon plate. It was literally the best smoked salmon I’ve ever had, in life. For anyone hesitant to try smoked salmon or thinks it just isn’t tasty, it’s probably because it wasn’t done correctly. The texture of smoked salmon can be tricky and when it isn’t done well, it seems to end up somewhere just past sashimi but not quite completely smoked, ending up with something that isn’t all that palatable. This was not a problem at London Steakhouse Co. They have truly perfected smoked salmon and I’m sure it will live in my dreams until I’m able to return one day. In fact, it may be the sole reason I return to London.
Our next course included entrees of smoked haddock fishcake with mustard sauce and wilted spinach, and braised boeuf bourguignon with creamed potatoes. Both entrees were absolutely delectable, with a slight edge awarded to the haddock fishcake. Also, up to the point of finishing the entrees, the food was balanced and light enough to be filling but not so heavy that it prevented us from moving on to dessert. And that, my friends, is a very important component of any good meal!
Dessert was the perfect finishing touch to such a delicious meal and included sticky toffee pudding paired with a glass of 2013 Fontanafredda Moncucco Moscato d’Asti dessert wine, along with creme brulee. Having never tried sticky toffee pudding, I was pleasantly surprised by the cake-like texture and pronounced toffee flavor. There was really only one question when it came to the creme brulee…would we hear that distinct cracking sound as we broke through the top layer of caramelized sugar into the custard below? Yes. Yes, we did.
I really cannot say enough good things about London Steakhouse Company. I had very high expectations when I arrived and every single one was not only met but exceeded. Do yourself a favor…book a flight, make a reservation, and treat yourself to some of the best food you will likely ever encounter.
Next on the agenda was a bar so unique you have to wear special clothing just to enter. Ice Bar London lives up to its name and is made completely of ice harvested from the Torne River in Northern Sweden. Everything, and I mean everything, in Ice Bar is made of ice, right down to the glasses in which your cocktails are served. Ice Bar cycles through various themes with the current theme being Icebar Rocks, a tribute to rock music. Some of the sculptures included a 6-foot tall ice skull, studs, and various etched designs. The temperature in Ice Bar is a chilly -5 degrees Celsius. Luckily, guests are provided with thermal capes and mittens to be warn during a maximum 40-minutes stay. In a word…fun!! This place was So. Much. Fun! Ice Bar offers an inventive cocktail menu also. For example, I had the Chop Suey, a combination of Absolut vanilla vodka, blueberry liqueur, apple juice, and cinnamon syrup. It was tasty, y’all! Without a doubt, Ice Bar is the coolest bar, literally and figuratively, that I’ve ever encountered.
Our GUDO ended with a trip to Adelphi Theatre to see the musical Kinky Boots, the perfect ending to such a fun day. In a nutshell, Kinky Boots is the story of a son, Charlie, who inherits the family’s floundering shoe business. A chance encounter with Lola, a drag queen, ultimately leads to a complete overhaul of the company and eventual success selling, what else, Kinky Boots! Cyndi Lauper wrote the entire musical set for the show, which is now a Grammy winning musical with rave reviews all over the world. I’m a huge fan of musicals in general, but this show really was fantastic and captivates the audience from start to finish. Oh, and did I mention it’s based on a true story?
So, there you have it, our GUDO in London. It was real. It was fun. It was real fun!! There’s definitely no lack of adult activities in London, but with the limited time we had to indulge I couldn’t have been happier with our choices. Until next time, y’all, thanks for stopping by!