Thursday 16th September 2021

I visited Val at Moscova, Hastings, and he said there was someone in Madama Butterfly called Toyota. First of all he didn’t want any vac-ing done but once I’d inveigled Mr Henry from the Official Car into the Los Angeles-style bungalow, ¬†he was pleased be vac-ed. He even said Mr Henry was able to do more than his own machine. Next time we’re going to do his cupboard fronts.

Bruce McBain had a terrifying birthday dinner. 14 bottles were consumed when only six dined, three women, three men, none of them quite right in the hand, thank God. ¬†Prince Dmitri dined another day. He doesn’t like the new woke world. Neither do I. In fact, I’m just not having it.

Then last Friday I boarded for Deal with Royston King. Our hosts took us to a paying Supper Club in a wood nearby. The chef was Rashleigh Rashleigh: you remember him – huge in the 90s. Loved by all who lunched, as everybody did, at the expense of others, in those days. His place was in Kensington: Sid Id was there and all the best authors, being lunched. As for the Supper Club, it was an incredible web that had created it. I couldn’t pass an exam in it. The scene had only been bought a month or two ago: there was a goody gentleman’s farmhouse (no farm of course), outbuildings, cottages and an arboretum. Royston King came across a prize specimen of Acer Griseum and was in Heaven. A mother-in-law had sold another property which paid for this one, which hadn’t been in fact for sale, but they just had to have it. Not clear where the mother-in-law is now housed, but not there for sure. There’s to be a restaurant, an hotel and probably a swimming pool. No planning permission but why worry? There was money, perhaps not quite enough, but obstacles were not on the whole tolerated or even acknowledged. Royston was deeply quizzing of the bar arrangements but the youths pouring had incredibly tight trousers. We found out later that Rashleigh Rashleigh has a wizard who has somehow managed to double his money for him during the recent unmentionable. It was that sort of world.

At the end of the table was a wan handsome woman with a small dog. This was Rashleigh Rashleigh’s present wife but Sid Id’s first. What a coincidence. Also she’s the sister of Duckface. The man I sat next to was in Wine and Spirits. The week before he’d been in Corfu. He said, ‘I can get you wine, no problem. What I can’t get you is ships. I can’t get you containers.’ Luckily I didn’t want any of those. He was facing a 120ft pyracantha hedge the next day. Incredible to think, only a week before he’d been in Corfu where you could do anything apparently. His wife being away with her opera-singing sister was a good opportunity to get on with cutting the hedge. The funny thing about the sister was how small she is. Opera singers are supposed to be huge. On the other hand, in Corfu, where he’d been the week before… There was no escaping that he’d been in Corfu the week before. There was a strong Lockdown Skeptic undercurrent, not perhaps its most scientific manifestation but the Gin and Jag version. The whole party, I would say, was the entrepreneurs of the South East in revolt.

The menu was Sea Bass ceviche in her chilli sauce (Sea Bass tasted of little), Cep Risotto (delicious), Rose Veal, Cheese Romesco, Roasted Plum Tomatoes (very good, but too pink for some. Superb herbal gravy. But Royston said tasted of nothing; our hostess found her romesco hard) dessert Damson Fool with cream piping and a triangle of cake (I liked, but some found it sour and unambitious as a dessert).

The Raw Sea-Bass 1st Course

The Raw Sea-Bass 1st Course

Posted Friday, September 17, 2021 under Adrian Edge day by day.

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