Having a restaurant to yourself can be unnerving, what with the staff scrutiny, the weird silence, and the realization that you can never again say "I've never even been to a Wimpy". For a far more enjoyable resto takeover, hit The Disappearing Dining Club.
Opened by an Aussie restaurateur and a Belgian/French head chef (and 10-year Oxo Tower/East Rooms alum), DDC's a dining establishment boasting but one table, set in a converted, windowless Chinese takeaway whose now-black walls reflect no light onto varnished wooden furniture, mismatched cutlery, paperback-lined shelves, and stopped clocks, something that for most of 2003 the world feared couldn't be done.
The table, which seats ten, requires 48-hour adv. booking, and stays open all day for any purpose you desire (design-your-own dinner party, business lunch, casual breakfast, etc.); to commandeer the whole thing, you need a minimum of six, but twice-weekly starting from tomorrow night, five or fewer can book for an intimate meal with strangers, though how's everyone to use their forks when their hands are asleep?
The food itself is served in rustic oversize dishes, with the a la carte "Land, Sea & Air" menu (a whole garlic-braised lamb shoulder, roast guinea fowl, and baked sea bass) and a kaleidoscopically flavourful seven-course taster; a select booze list rotates monthly, with a few permanent vino fixtures, plus opportunities for special requests, but not Special Brew requests, because even though the meals are informal, they're still indoors.
The proprietors also throw shindigs elsewhere, with a monthly Dinner Dance taking place in a "reclaimed or unusual space in London" and featuring plentiful live music, food, and drink, so for once, other people will see you go on a Bender.
Published: January 31, 2011 at 2:00am EST
31 Featherstone Street Shoreditch
London, EC1Y 2BJ
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