Today Mr B and I were in Istanbul.
Not the actual city, you understand, not the kind-of capital of Turkey. Had we been heading somewhere that exotic, you
would have been among the first to hear about it. Via my Daily Blog you would have been endlessly entertained (or otherwise) by my preparations, my packing, my selection of reading material. I am sure I would have managed to squeeze at least three blogs-worth
out of the experience, before we even boarded our plane.
We were actually in a local sea-front restaurant which is called Istanbul, presumably on the basis that it serves Turkish and Mediterranean
food. Food with names like falafel and hamsi and kremali tavuk which sounded exotic but arrived on our table looking far more recognisable than those names suggested. We were in the company of about forty other members of the Luncheon Club.
Now there's a club for those of you who like your food! The Luncheon Club does what it says on the tin. Every few weeks, the Luncheon Club meets and eats. It's as simple as that.
Mr B and I decided to join The Luncheon Club because we are only too aware that, when it comes to eating out, we always gravitate towards the same restaurants. We are boring that way. It's not only the food that
draws us back to our favourite places: just as important is the seating. We like a bit of privacy, we like to be tucked away in a corner where we can natter away to our heart's content. A table where we are not overlooked, but where I can keep
an eye on what's happening elsewhere in the restaurant, just in case something exciting happens. It rarely does but just occasionally someone will have a birthday and the waiters will bring them their pudding with a sparkler or two fizzing away on top. It's
that kind of happening which will make my evening. Little things, you know...
We used to eat most Friday nights at a restaurant which had a sweet little area decorated to look like a garden shed.
"Can we eat in the shed?" we always used to ask. We usually could as it seemed other people didn't share our liking for the company of garden implements, flower pots and fancy trellises when scoffing their steak and ale pie or sausages, mash and onion gravy.
In fact the only thing I didn't like about eating there was the background music. Well, that's not completely true - I loved the music which was from what might be called "our era", but all through our meal Mr B would be asking me "Who sang
this?" or "What's the name of the group singing this one?" or "Who's their lead singer?" Honestly, it was like being on Mastermind. But with food.
Sadly that restaurant is no more - or, rather, the
building remains but the business has been re-invented several times, changing its name, its menus and (I suspect) its clientele. Certainly the shed has been dismantled. We found other places to go. And when we found somewhere we liked,
we went back there. Again and again and again. Hence The Luncheon Club which (we hope) will challenge us to try different eating establishments, new cuisine, and all in the company of other foodies.
We shall experiment! We shall be more daring in our food choices! We shall eat, drink and be merry! Hurrah for The Luncheon Club!