It was 5pm on a Tuesday and the perfect time for some champagne. Well champagne and canapés at the glamorous new Searcy’s Champagne Bar launch, that is. And that’s exactly where Qin Xie was on the 29th of March.
I knew that we were going to a cocktail masterclass, but what I didn’t know was that the evening would be devoted to those archetypal French drinks, pastis and absinthe. The drinks were the stars of the show, and rightly so. It was interesting to see them in a new light, one which demonstrated their versatility, and will hopefully boost their popularity.
Qin Xie was recently invited to sample some fine Scotch whiskies at 69 Colebrooke Row, where many a delightful cocktail had been consumed in the past. It’s the sort of bijoux venue where there’s just enough light to cast a pleasing glow over everything, and everyone. And, if you know someone who knows someone, you can even take a tour in the lab upstairs where the possibilities are simply endless.
The latest episode in a show that attempts to resuscitate the lacklustre British palate started with restaurateur and part-time Frenchman Michel Roux exclaiming: ‘I’m Michel Roux and I’m passionate about bread.” From these unpromising beginnings you wonder how Roux is going to make a 30 min programme on bread interesting, and to give him credit, he tries.
This was the first time I have drunk Champagne throughout a meal and I have to say, it was a brilliant thing to do. I’m not, by any means suggesting that you might pair each of your courses at a restaurant or around your dining table, with different Champagnes as a regular thing; it’s a little decadent. But it’s a fun thing to do,