When I say slightly, I actually mean very. My 25th birthday was on the 26th January, so lets just say the delay is down to old age…
This post will be in similar vein to my previous one when I took Alan to London for his birthday, as, you guessed it, he took me to London for mine. We’re both not entirely sure why we went a little OTT on each other this time around – next birthdays will most definitely be a meal out somewhere local, what with saving for a house and wedding at the moment! Life gets so expensive as you get older – why, as children, do we always want to grow up?!
Anywho, back to the task in hand – Birthday Surprises! Alan isn’t always the best at keeping surprises from me, he’ll usually make hints or ask me questions, just to make sure I’ll like something. Plus, I don’t particularly like surprises as I’m an awful liar so if I don’t like something I can’t hide the fact. Awkward. Nevertheless, he did me proud and for surprise No 1 he had booked us tickets to have a peak inside Buckingham Palace and wonder around the State Rooms.
The tour was amazing and really interesting, when I got home I was reeling off all the facts to my parents or anyone who would listen! We went through several rooms, hearing about the many French pieces previous Kings had collected during their reign and even learnt that there is a swimming pool located in the Palace. Who knew! After the tour had finished we were taken back round to the grand entrance, which you often see the Royal family walking into on television, where we had a glass of champagne (and Alan and I also pretended we were royalty).
Unfortunately, but understandably you are not allowed to take any photographs, but I would definitely recommend a visit.
Surprise No 2 was a night rubbing shoulders with celebs, at Heston Blumenthals restaurant, Dinner. The food was incredible – we both preferred it to the food we ate at Gordon Ramsay’s Maze in November. When we arrived we had our coats stored away and were led into the bar, where we ordered some drinks and were given some nibbles (on the house I might add) whilst we waited for our table. Apparently you have a 2 hour seating with your reservation, however we stayed longer than this and were not made to feel rushed at all. When we were ready, we were led to our table and were lucky enough to be sat in front of the kitchen, where we could see the madness take place. Having said that, it was a surprisingly calm organised kitchen.
Soon enough a waiter appeared to ask if we had any questions regarding the menu. Obviously the fancy words went straight over my head so we had to do a little enquiring. He also told us the origin of the recipes, how they have reinvented and modernised century old recipes for this menu. After our little history lesson we ordered our food, some wine and took in our surroundings.
It wasn’t long before our starters arrived. I had ordered chicken oysters and Alan went for the pâté. Both arrived beautifully presented, Alan’s pâté was even encased in a orange shaped jelly. My chicken oysters were lovely, however I didn’t realise the sauce was made with horseradish – which kind of ruined it for me. Alan’s pâté was heavenly, really creamy – he’d picked the winner starter.
For our mains we both went for the Filet Steak with mushroom ketchup. It was heavenly. Even thinking about it now, a month after, my mouth is watering.. It came with Heston’s infamous triple-cooked chips and we added some green beans to complete the meal.
We were well and truly full by the end of our mains but we’d already ordered our dessert as it needed 40 minutes to cook. Luckily we decided to share the Tipsy cake – which is apparently a winner at Heston’s and we weren’t disappointed. It’s almost like a hot pastry with melted white chocolate at the bottom and a slice of pineapple on the side, that’s been soaked in a sweet sauce for 8 hours. I’m not describing it well, but it was amazing. You are also given a free chocolate treat at the end of your meal. Added bonus.
To top off the day, half way through the meal we realised we were sat next to a celeb – Adam Garcia, the main guy in Coyote Ugly and as we were leaving we saw David Emmanuel propped up against the bar.
Oh how the other half live.