There’s always a bit of pressure when you’re asked to organise the work Christmas Lunch, usually because you’re dealing with a range of people with very different ideas of what constitutes an enjoyable lunch experience. I needn’t have worried, though, as in the Whiski Rooms I feel I’ve found a really reliable all-round crowd-pleaser.
I have to thank Frauke, who initially recommended the place following her visit in June. My subsequent visit confirmed the rumour that the soup was first class, and the place very presentable. Our visit with a party of twenty further confirmed that the staff can ably handle larger groups, as well.
We had pre-selected our menu choices, so I had the considerable joy of marshaling the “master-spreadsheet”. The staff worked well with this, ensuring that everyone received their dishes accurately and quickly. They did rather weirdly insist on us using the same cutlery for both starters and mains, which seemed a very odd choice, but that was the only blip.
As for the food, my soup was superb. For me, this place is fast becoming my top soup place in the city, in terms of pure quality. Parsnip soup is a regular on festive menus and this was an excellent example of it. The crunchy parsnip crisps that topped it were excellent, too.
For main course, I opted for the traditional turkey, which was very good. On the eye, it wasn’t a winner, simply because it looked too well-mannered and polite, and I’m not used to there being “spare plate” with Christmas dinner, but that speaks more of my over-gluttonous approach to festive fare than anything else.
On taste, it hit all the right notes, with the cranberry sauce brimming with flavour and the stuffed turkey wrapped in bacon proving moist and tasty. The roast potatoes weren’t great, but everyone prefers their own version of those particular festive staples.
Overall, the Whiski Rooms served us incredibly well. I will be back on a regularly, throughout 2012, to sample their excellent soups. I’d also be confident booking one of their regular banqueting style events, as they can clearly be relied upon to handle larger groups.
Blythe scores the Whiski Rooms:
4/5 for food
4/5 for presentation
3/5 for service
4/5 for setting
giving an overall 15/20
Today lunch questers were: my delightful work colleagues
we ate: a range of festive treats
We drank: wine, beer, water, coffee, tea
We wore: an aquamarine top, stripey shirt, chunky watch, checked jacket, Dennis the menace jumper, lilac shirt, spectacles, chunky sweater, red party dress, animal print dress, , stylish light brown top, blue shirt (2), tartan party dress, LBD, festive hat, two-tone brogues.
Total bill: c.£650 (20 diners)