And so The Literary Hour began! Inspired by the limitless imagination of the legendary Roald Dahl, The Literary Hour opened its terraced house door, to turn the living room into a pop-up restaurant. For our first ever event we welcomed our friends and family to a soft launch of our Dahl menu (who proved to be our toughest critics yet - but with much needed and appreciated feedback - thanks!) then to the wonderful public.
The stand-out "course" (if you can really call it that because (a) it wasn't on the menu as it was our first, now signature, surprise course and (b) because technically it is 3 courses in one) had to be Willy Wonka's 3 course dinner chewing gum. This was the most memorable Dahl food from our childhood and we quite simply had to go to any lengths necessary to recreate it. It wouldn't have been Roald Dahl without it! The challenge was figuring out how you make your own chewing gum, and then how to make it tomato soup, roast beef and blueberry pie flavoured! Answer: Order pellets from seemingly the only supplier in the world based in America and then create your own juice to add as flavour. The creation of Willy Wonka's vision was uncanny, but having tasted it, his vision was, well, interesting! A real crowd divider. I mean Roast Beef chewing gum anyone? Really?!
Other menu highlights were The Witches Thai green curry soup served with lemongrass scones, lime butter and coconut sambal which heralded the humble beginnings of our tea cup and saucer collection (it's now gathering momentum and tipping the 100 mark!)
Golden tickets wrapped on chocolate bars were posted to all guests. I still get excited thinking about people's reactions and giddy golden smiles as they opened up the envelopes.
And in the early days of hosting supper clubs I think it's fair to say we all went overboard on "staff meals"; I hate to think how much of Willy Wonka's whipple-scrumptious fudgemallow delight served in a brownie bowl I consumed. Minimum 3 portions a night I'd say.