Mrs Croft: “He’s very full of himself, I must say. Doesn’t eat meat. He’s coming to a shooting party and he doesn’t eat meat.”
Mrs Wilson: “Now, now Mrs Croft. We don’t want to be thought unsophisticated do we? Mr Weissman’s an American. They do things differently there.”
The interior of The Charlotte Street Hotel
This was just one of the lines in Gosford Park which had me chuckling away as I watched it in the cinema at The Charlotte Street Hotel. I do love a good period drama and Gosford Park has all the fabulous frocks and detail along with being a cracking whodunnit. I was invited to watch Gosford Park and then eat a Gosford Park themed menu as part of the London Restaurant Festival’s Eat Film programme.
The Countess of Wexham cocktail
The Charlotte Street Hotel was the perfect venue thanks to its plush underground cinema where he watched the film and sipped on limonatas from the sponsors, San Pellegrino. The temperature in the cinema was a little bit arctic but perhaps that is just Autumn. Once the film was over we headed upstairs for a meal at Oscar’s restaurant inspired by the type of banquets that would have been served at an English countryhouse shooting party weekend.
The hotel is in a beautiful old grey coloured building and the restaurant and bar area is light and lively with colourful murals painted along the walls. We started with a drink inspired by the movie, The Countess of Trentham cocktail which was gin based and then laced with cinnamon syrup, lemon juice and apple juice. Finished with some fresh ginger and a pinch of powdery cinnamon it was pretty potent but had a lovely almost Christmas taste to it. I don’t think the Countess would have known what hit her.
The starter was Welsh Rarebit which was the suggested alternative for the vegetarian guest in the movie. I do love Welsh Rarebit but I think The Charlotte Street Hotel’s version is not quite as good as St John’s where the cheese is piping hot and the bread just the right side of crusty.
Following the shooting party theme the main course was roast pheasant and game chips. The large leg of the bird which was a little too dry but it was served on a bed of creamy mash and had lashings of rich gravy. The accompanying game chips were actually more like thin game crisps which was an interesting twist on a more traditional dish.
The dish of the night was the dessert of pillowy bread and butter pudding. I can remember my Mum making bread and butter pudding when we were younger to use up stale bread but The Charlotte Street Hotel’s version was pure luxury rather than leftover with layer upon layer of bread rich with milk, cream and eggs.
I loved the whole concept of the movies and meal and watching Gosford Park beforehand certainly let us work up an appetite while adding some context to the dishes we were eating. However, apart from the dessert and delicious cocktail I was not wowed by the calibre of the food at The Charlotte Street Hotel.
Details: The Charlotte Street Hotel, 15-17 Charlotte Street, Soho W1T 1RJ (Ph 020 7806 2000) Tube: Tottenham Court Road
Damage: Reasonable. £48.50 for the movie, a three course meal and cocktail.
Gourmet Chick was a guest of San Pellegrino
If you liked reading this you might be interested in my review of my meal at Yauatcha for the London Restaurant Festival last year.