By Beth Goss
A grand building that will leave you feeling as if you have been transported back in time, The Ritz London is a location that needs no introduction. Step in through the grand entrance and be greeted with large ornate pillars, and impressive ceilings. Continue onwards and you will find yourself in an equally adorned hallway with the Rivoli Bar to your right. Why not take the opportunity to order a cocktail as you wait, taking in the many tables, mirrored walls, and period artwork that make up the tearoom?
Live at the Ritz is an evening of fine dining and entertainment held every weekend at the Ritz Restaurant. You can choose between a set menu or can dine à la carte with an additional charge added to your bill to cover the cost of the band and dancers. Though you can book a time-slot that suits you, by arriving early as we did, you may be fortunate enough to get a seat at the edge of the dance floor with a good view of the band as they ready their instruments.
I fully recommend that you take the opportunity to truly soak in the extravagant dining room in which you are now sat. The perfect combination of opulent surroundings and a small number of tables leaves the whole dining experience feeling personal and intimate.
You will be greeted by your waiter and the sommelier, who will continue to be attentive to your needs as the evening progresses.
As a Michelin starred restaurant, the dishes were small but packed full of exceptional flavours. The six courses are brought out gradually throughout the evening, giving you time to enjoy the band and your luxurious surroundings. The sommelier ensured that our wine glasses stayed full, allowing us to slowly savour the rich 2014 Domaine de Colette Morgon.
Memorable, Delicious Dishes
Every one of the dishes that my companion and I tasted where memorable and delicious. The night started with a light aperitif that went perfectly with the glass of champagne we had chosen to celebrate the occasion. Around the time the starters were served, the band started up with swing and lounge classics from the likes of Frank Sinatra and other members of the Rat Pack. Time is given between courses so you can take to the dance floor, which occupies up a small portion of the room, with your partner.
One of the most memorable courses came in the form of the lamb main. Served alongside roasted aubergine and a curried lamb croquette, this dish was packed full of hearty flavours. Adorned with a crispy crumb and a rich jus, this dish stood out for its excellent combination of classic flavours.
The entertainment took it up a notch with the introduction of two professional dancers just before dessert. Swinging, tapping, and lifting their way through several choreographed routines, I was delighted to have the opportunity to be so close to the action.
Revelling in this night of excess and grandeur, we treated ourselves to Vintage Ritz cocktails from the Rivoli Bar. This impressive menu uses forgotten spirits from the 1950s-80s to make unique cocktails with a taste of a bygone era. A list topped by a £500 Sazerac, it is truly for the cocktail aficionados out there.
A uniquely memorable experience, I would heartily recommend the Ritz as the perfect way to celebrate an important occasion. From the moment you spot the hotel’s name in light’s you truly feel that you have been transported to another era, in all the best ways.
Contributor Beth Goss is a copywriter, traveler, and part time gamer.