Does the thought of dining in a padded and insulated metallic pod seem a bit claustrophobic to you? Yeah, us too. That’s probably why we’re not all astronauts. But being an astronaut does comes with serious cool-factor. And so does dining in Gordon Ramsay’s new private dining space, Street Lounge.
You’re sure to get the astronaut treatment (yes, we just coined that term) when you cross the length of Bread Street Kitchen (Gordon Ramsay’s sleek restaurant in the City) and step into what looks like the Apollo 11 space ship from the famous moon landing. And why is that? Everyone’s eyes follow you with envy and admiration as you crawl into the giant metal pod – make sure not to fall on your face.
The VIP treatment continues once you’re seated comfortably inside the pod (which doesn’t feel claustrophobic at all, by the way), where cocktails await. Your group will be given a dedicated waiter who, for your first cocktail (a Spring Negroni), will show you how to pour it into your glass and garnish it nicely.
The Spring Negroni is fresher and easier to drink than a normal Negroni. Credit: Kathryn Walker
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What awaits is a three-course meal in the form of canapé-sized bites, all served sharing-style on tea stands. The menu gives promise of fusion flavours from Italy and south-east Asia – we’re intrigued.
Before it arrives, though, there’s plenty of time for some serious Instagramming. Featuring kitsch, fun interiors which wouldn’t look out of place in an Austin Powers movie (and we mean that in the best way possible), the place is made for it. Unusual space? Check. Gold-studded, pastel pink banquettes that wrap around the entire pod? Check. Light-up marble table tops? Check. It’s even got its own hashtag – #UpYourStreet.
The SquareMeal girls in the pod #UpYourStreet. Credit: Kathryn Walker
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Starting with the cold dishes, you can expect a selection of sushi and nigiri, as well as pea and leek tarts with a parmesan hollandaise glaze. Our absolute favourite though was the spicy tuna tartare served on a wonton crisp with crème fraîche and avocado. It ticks all the boxes – lovely flavour and freshness with a hint of spice from the tartare, crunch and texture from the crisp and a mellow neutraliser from the sauces.
The hot canapés are equally divine. Unctuous miniature pork belly sliders come with apple sauce and coleslaw, whereas the wild mushroom and truffle arancinis provide earthiness and warmth. Get stuck in with the sticky lollipops of tamarind chicken wings while munching on truffle fries. Does it work? Absolutely. The n’djua gnocchi is dense and rich and utterly bursting with flavour.
The food is served on a cutsie little tea stand.
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Food comes in abundance, so we recommend arriving with an empty stomach. We nearly didn’t have room for dessert, but who are we kidding – there’s always room for dessert. Especially when it comes in the form of cheesecake infused with Monkey Shoulder whisky, chocolate tarts with honeycomb or sticky toffee pudding with clotted cream – wowza, this is rich stuff. That's why we favoured the pineapple and kiwi ‘carpaccio’ with passion fruit, which gave a much lighter finish to the meal.
Prices aren’t astronomical either (see what we did there?) with food and drink packages starting at £50pp with potential for upgrading. The pod holds up to eight guests, so is ideal for a swanky private dinner with a difference. We reckon hen dos, birthday parties or client dinners would go down a treat here.
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The pod sits within Bread Street Kitchen’s new cocktail lounge, Street Lounge, which is available for exclusive hire of parties up to 30 people. So for a birthday party, have you nearest and dearest friends for dinner in the pod, then invite the rest for a whopping party in the lounge – may we suggest a space-themed one where you all dress up as astronauts?
Looking for more interesting dining experiences for your group? Browse them here