Here it is, Friday again, and as ever, we have the Friday afternoon dilemma. I finish work at 4 on a Friday. My husband finishes 5.30-6pm. So if we want to meet up and do stuff, I either have to do an unfeasible amount of extra work, or find things to fill in time that do not involve buying more shoes. Because I really have enough shoes to be getting on with (for this season...)
Today I hit upon the answer. The salon where I get my hair (head and body) dealt with has a loyalty card, and in my purse was a full card. So I phoned and asked if I could redeem it for a file & varnish at 4.15. And calloo callay they could. I asked for their sluttiest red. It had gone gloopy and I was asked to make another choice. I went for the anti-red, with a glass of champagne and a dish of kettle crisps, because it is a classy sort of joint.
So it was with brilliant turquoise nails that I set forth down the Monopoly board of London streets. Across Leicester Sq (£260), down Piccadilly (£280), along Bond St (£320) and into the heart of Mayfair. To go to a pub that I was assured did home-made pork scratchings. And even better - served a whole sheet of pork scratchings on a wooden board with a mallet to break them up with.
Alas - our plans hit a snag at this point. The Windmill (3 times winner of Britain's best steak & kidney pie competition) has stopped doing the pork scratchings. We made do with a lesser bar snack - a really fabulous 8" sausage roll. Nicely seasoned and with lovely flaky pastry. At this point I realised that I should have brought my camera and made do with the phone... Stonking shadow on the parsley, I thought. And it is Mayfair, so when I insisted on dead horse (and was polite enough to call it ketchup) they brought out Heinz.
Of course, woman cannot live by sausage roll alone, so we crossed Regent St (£300) and went to La Trouvaille, just off Carnaby St which is a really lovely place to go if you want a plate of something nice and a glass of something sippable.
The charcuterie plate is an old fave, but I didn't think it was absolutely enough for 2, so I encouraged Paul to get half a dozen oysters, and while he was distracted by these plump Brittany beauties I dived into the pork. Rillettes (better texture than my home made but not as well-flavoured) a lovely pate, a sort of salami (quite mild but rolled in pepper), some ham and a sausage that reminds me of something we used to get from Iseli's Swiss butcher in Ashfield when I was a child. Cornichon, pickled onions, 2 sorts of bread. I had a glass of rose, he had a glass of a pretty butch red.
Scuttled home and still had time for a bottle of cava, an episode of Chuck and a frustrating period trying to figure out how to get the bloody photos off my phone. The perfect Friday night.