230 ways to say ‘I love you’?

Javea hosts the wedding of the year this Saturday mage Instagram Marta Lozano

A RECENT trip to London coincided with Valentine’s Day with high-end restaurants cashing in on what is traditionally their busiest time since the Christmas/ New Year party season.

One London hotel restaurant near Harrods was offering a set menu for £230 (€277) per person, plus service.

Handy for bankers keen to splash the cash on some balsamic-infused-sun-blushed-served-on-a-coulis concoction or other so prevalent now!

But you’ll find even favourite local restaurants cashing in, demanding higher prices for cut-down set menus.

The atmosphere, though, is far from romantic, in a room with extra tables squeezed in full of couples dutifully gazing into each others’ eyes to a Barry White soundtrack banging elbows with the next couple.

My advice, then, is never to dine out on Valentine’s Day.

The service is often under pressure, expectations are unfeasibly high and getting a table for two a bit like trying to get Madonna to keep her clothes on.

Which brings me to other London culinary experiences. One may be just a passing fad. Let’s hope so.

“Let me explain our concept”: five words from a waiter that chill the soul of any foodie. At one place, this mandates that food be shared.

But, hang on! What happens if you fancy the soup?

Does the waiter place the bowl in the middle and everyone leans over, or does he walk around the table holding the bowl allowing everyone a slurp at a time?

The Lord save us from restaurants and their ‘concepts’.

Another fad, probably likewise confined to London, is that of portion size.

Hopefully, it too should fizzle out.

We’ve had big plates with small food, big plates with tall food, small plates with small, tall food, and now, I discovered, small plates with tiny food.

Surely there can’t be many variations left before there’s a return to big plates with big food? Judging by the brisk trade at London’s top-end restaurants, it looks as if all the obscenely rich bankers are there to stay.

But, recession or no recession, PM David Cameron still insists Brits are all in it together. (Except, of course, bankers and their bonuses.)

Nora Johnson’s novels, Soul Stealer & The De Clerambault Code (www.nora-johnson.com) now also available at Amazon.es in paperback and eBook. Profits to Cudeca 

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