Friday, 11 May 2012

Jubilee Dinner - 'Best of British' - Monday 4th June

So here we are, our Jubilee event celebrating the 'Best of British' to be held on Monday 4th of June which is a Bank Holiday but then again, so is the day after! We have some great local produce on the menu as well as some twists on some classics (you didn't think we'd be serving you an actual greasy fry-up as a starter did you?). Everything will be sourced as close as possible to Bath. Just click on the image below to see what delicious treats and dishes we'll be serving up.

This time we've got a table for 8 people (it's stretching the cutlery and plate store somewhat). You can book all 8, or 1 seat if you want, it's up to you! Check out the 'How it Works' section for the details. It's bring your own, kick off is at 7.30pm, the suggested contribution is £25 and we'll let you know the details as soon as you email us:

So if you don't have a street party to go to then do the next best thing and come along to Syd's Secret Supper Club and celebrate the Jubilee - and don't forget, the next day is a Bank Holiday too!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Jubilee 'Best of British' - Monday 4th June

To celebrate 60 years of Her Majesty being on the throne we're hosting our next Secret Supper Club in Central Bath on Monday 5th June!

It's another Bank Holiday the next day so come along and celebrate with our 'Best of British' Menu. 5 Courses celebrating British produce with some classics and some twists and turns along the way. This is going to be a 'Diamond' evening!

The Menu will be out in a few days but if you want to be on the mailing list for it or to book please email us at

Bastille Day! 14th July

Good moaning. To cellabroote the staming of the Bostille, we will be hasting a Fronch extroovaganza with some clossic Fronch dashes.

Wow it's actually really difficult to type like Officer Crabtree from Allo Allo! But yes we will be hosting a Bastille Day celebration here in Central Bath to partly to celebrate the storming of the Bastile but it's also an excuse to cook some great French food (not sure about the snails or frogs legs though...).

So if you'd like to come then please get in touch. Further details will be out soon but this will be for 8 people and 5 courses with kick-off at 7.30pm.

Vive la Revolution!

Saturday, 14 April 2012

The Big Night

So come 7.30 we were ready to rock and roll, not sure if what we were doing was going to work, taking a massive gamble (as were our guests) but also incredibly excited for what could be the first of many...

I suppose the best way to describe it is to document the evening through the medium of photos:

Table set...

Table ready....


Lite Bites

Polenta Crostini with Black Olive & Tomato Salsa 

Prawn Noodle Gremolata

  Smoked Salmon Mousse and Cucumber

Hard at work...

Scallop Tartare with White Chocolate Foam

Cider Braised Chicken with Chorizo & Celeriac Mash

Tarte au Citron (stupid flash)

Coffee and Petits Fours

Cinnamon Palmiers, Strawberry & Vanilla Meringues, Chocolate Truffles. Served on a plate on a notepad.

Our delightful guests

We had a fantastic evening and there were some great surprises. Firstly we expected people would just stick to their own wine but actually they all shared and were able to enjoy each other's wine. Something you wouldn't get in a conventional restaurant. Secondly, people are really interesting. I suppose you don't come along to one of these without being somewhat social and each and everyone of our guests joined in, socialised and seemed to have fun from the off. No awkwardness, just 8 people (ourselves included) all getting involved and sharing something new.

And finally, an interesting point was that people would like to see us sit down with them and eat to involve us more and get to know us. Our the table is in our kitchen/living room so we can join in but I don't think that you do as much as when you sit down. So that may be something to look at in the future.

And to top it all off, Hannah got called into work at 10pm! Just as the coffee was going out.

We will definitely be setting another date for May so watch out!

Are We? Aren't we?

So it was a late Thursday evening with minimal food in the house (the food was being delivered the next morning) that the prep began.Ideally I would have done the tart base but had no butter annoyingly.

My first ever attempt at meringues went fine if a little large for one mouthful as a Petit Four. There seems to be so much of a mystique surrounding these and I don't see what the fuss is about. Whisking eggs, adding sugar and a dash of vanilla and putting in the oven. But due to them growing in the oven I did another batch which worked even better.

My first attempt. Supposed to be 'walnut' sized but that didn't happen!

Then onto truffles, which this time I quenelled rather than piped. I have a rubbish little piping bag which I used last time. Wouldn't quenelle again as you don't as good a finish when you shape and dip them.

(My first go a few weeks ago when the weather was better).

The Friday started early and according to plan until lunchtime when the pastry which had been rolled between two sheets of greaseproof paper decided to get the paper wedge in to cracks which meant the pastry just disintegrated before being put into the case. Lesson learnt - don't trust Heston when it comes to pastry and don't put it in the freezer. It too me half an hour to roll it out it was so hard! So a rapid new batch was rustled up this time using the tried and tested Ashburton recipe which was much more moist and pliable. Disaster averted, preparations continued and in the end got very little time to actually shower and rest before kick off! All the time waiting for the dreaded call for Hannah to be called in...


So the last few weeks have been a crash course in publicity, advertising and social media promotion. Twitter, Facebook and Blogger have all been ridiculously addictive - seeing how many views we've had, tracking where they're from (Russia, Argentina, USA bizarrely) and seeing the hit count creeping up, particularly in the last week.

Twitter is a bit weird. It seems to be filled with local businesses, enterprises  and personalities all following each other in the hope of them following back to gain credibility and get the 'Follower' count up. At the moment we're up to 52, which is good for 3 weeks work. I think. The people at NowBath have been particularly helpful, re-tweeting and getting the word out to 1500 people at a time.

However, none of this amounted to any bookings, leading us to unofficially cancel the event. That was until we had a booking out of the blue on Tuesday and some more last minute ones on Wednesday and Thursday. All of which led to a table full but some last minute shopping and a day full of prep for the big event! Not helped by the fact that now Hannah had agreed to go on call for Friday night with the expectation of being called in and missing it leaving me 'alllll byyyyy mmyyyyyy seeeeelllfff'.

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Masterchef @ IKEA

So way back when in September, the day after we moved from Cambridgeshire to Bath (as you do), we took a trip to IKEA in Bristol to buy some wardrobes for our new flat and of course the inevitable photo frames, candles and other things you never knew you needed. For me it was easy as I pretty much grew up in the aisles of Ikea or just left in the cinema to watch Cartoon Network. I think I was only forgotten once. But we also had both sets of parents for whom it was their first time. They could not get their heads around the fact that you had to go and get your furniture, let alone assemble it yourself.

Anywho, this isn't about IKEA's Service Concept, as amazing as it is. It's about a couple we saw in the kitchen section who had 3 trolleys between them that were stacked up with 10 of everything. Stock pots, skillets, spatulas, pasta strainers. You name it, they had it (and were frequently dropping on the floor with great clatters). We assumed they were student house landlords stocking up for their portfolio of 10 houses (it was September after all).

So back in February I got a call from my Mum that went something like 'Are you watching Masterchef?' (Of course I was), 'Well look in the background. Recognise those skillets, spatulas and pasta strainers?' She was right. The BBC/whoever produces Masterchef had taken the contestants to Bath to cater for the Jane Austen Festival and they were cooking in marquees on the lawn of the Royal Crescent. Lo and behold, they had been to IKEA a few days before and stocked up on everything you would need. The dates matched up perfectley as did the shiny pots and pans.

Why they didn't have this stuff already/hire it/bring it down from their studio I'll never know. But there you have it. Masterchef used the whole IKEA range of cooking equipment.

And on that bombshell...

Monday, 26 March 2012

Syd's Supper Club Opening Night! Friday 13th April

Here it is. The menu for our opening night here at Syd's Supper Club in Bath! We are very excited to be offering 6 seats at our table for this evening.

When: 7.30pm Friday 13th April 2012
Where: Central Bath

If you'd like to reserve your seat then please email us at and we'll end you the details.

The suggested contribution for this evening is £25. Please see the 'How it works' section for more details but standard rules apply. Bring your own tipple, but there's a free glass of bubbly on arrival.

Any further questions let us know but looking forward to seeing you soon! Spread the word! We'll hopefully be adding more dates soon...

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Friday the 13th...Unlucky for some...

Well we've had our measure up and after much huffing and puffing and moving of tables and book cases...we decided to keep the table pretty much where it is.

We've also confirmed the date, menu and capacity, we're just waiting on the ticketing to be sorted and people can sign up. So the details are:

Date: Friday the 13th April
Where: Syd's Secret Supper Club, Central Bath
Numbers: 6 Seats

Menu will be posted as soon as possible, hopefully tomorrow.

So spread the word! Syd is hosting a sumptuous supper and you're invited!

Monday, 19 March 2012

Even More Things That I've Cooked Before...

Stuffed Plaice Fillets with Roasted Red Peppers, Saffron Sauce and Sauteed Scallops
Tastes as good as it looks...

Pan-Fried Mackerel Fillets with Cannellini Bean & Tomato Stew, Crispy Belly Pork & Salsa Verde
Actually one of my least favourite dishes. Didn't enjoy the stew and mackerel isn't my best fish. But the belly pork was great. Would do that again but it takes a few days of prep...

 Lemon Tart
 Once again, I forgot to take a photo first. Whoops again...

Additional Things I've Cooked Before...

Ham & Mature Cheddar Tart with Mixed Dressed Leaves and 'Edible' Flowers
The tart was fantastic but the salad a little strong. They had all been foraged by a local supplier but still went well with the ham in the tart.

Goat's Cheese and Red Pepper Tortellini with Fresh Pesto
Perfect starter. Just enough but leaves you wanting more.

Pan Fried Fillet Steak with Cafe de Paris Butter, Fat Chips, Balsamic Roast Tomato, Stuffed Mushroom
Again, looks a bit messy but the tomatoes were done low and slow in the oven, keeping their juicy sweetness. The Beef confirmed to me that Fillet is overrated. It's tender but not as tasty as rump or sirloin.

Creme Brulee
 No explanation needed. But I forgot to take a photo before I started eating. Whoops...

Further Things I've Cooked Before...

Baked Smoked Haddock on a Bed of Buttered Spinach with Poached Egg, 'Local' Cheese& Curry Oil
The egg was poached the day before I think, but finished just before serving and still runny.

Pork Tenderloin 'En Papilotte' with Shaved Fennel, Apples, Cider and Thyme with Apple Mash, Honey Glazed Carrots and Celeriac
Pink but perfectly cooked pork.

Coconut Milk and Lemongrass Sorbet with Tuille Biscuits

The sorbet looks a bit grey but went very well with the tuille.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Other Things That I Have Cooked Before...

Vichysoisse Soup (with Bread Roll)
One of the few times a new potato is used as a garnish?

Roasted Best End of Lamb with Maderia Sauce & Wild Mushrooms, Dauphinoise Potato, Green Veg Selection
I'd say the mushrooms were actually the revelation from this dish (well, lamb is a given isn't it...)

Seasonal Fruit with Gran Marnier & Orange Sabayon & Praline
 Was nice and fresh but a lot of hassle for what was a fruit salad with a posh cream-type-thing...

Things That I've Cooked Before...

Poached Salmon & Dill Risotto

 Went a bit OTT with the Parmesan on top. Tried it again without the expensive Saffron and it seems to work just as well.

Griddled Chicken Breast with Paysanne Vegetables, Roasted Cherry Tomatoes, Garlic & Basil Oil

Looks a bit messy with hindsight but tasted amazing. Organic, corn fed chicken etc. But the most satisfying part was the tomatoes. Very simple but very effective not to mention vibrant when oppoed into your mouth!

Dark Chocolate & Amaretti Pot

Breaking through into Victor Mike on top...

Lift Off!

So after many many months of umming and arrring, it seems that we might be at a stage where Syd's Supper Club is a go-go. I first heard about this concept a few years ago, buried the idea away due to lifestyle constraints but it kept coming back and niggling at me so here we are. The lifestyle constraints have gone and I now have permission from Miss Syd to get going.

We need to have a mock up of the exact lay-out (we could have the table in the living room or our 'study') on Monday. After that, I'll come up with a firm menu (I have a few of the courses sorted but the rest are up for debate), check we have the cutlery etc to match the menu and get cracking on everything else required. So not much then! We'll have a 'soft' opening the week before to check and then Friday it is.

Whoop whoop!