The First Supper
Dinner, tea or supper? Such nuanced lexicology surrounds the evening meal, steeped in geographical locale and riddled with class distinction. There’s something Biblical sounding about the latter term for eating. Of course, the “last supper” merits three mentions in the New Testament. And what a meal, loaded with symbolism, sacrifice, tradition, love, betrayal.
On a Dickensian window in Deal Conservation Area (a maze of smugglers’ alleys) a sign reads: “The Dining Club is an unusual style of dining venue. It is unique in that you book a table and will be seated in individual dining rooms that feel more like a private dinner party than a restaurant. We have five different rooms each decorated in their own contemporary Georgian style, each having its own ambience.” Tonight though, it’s supper at home.
“Well it was night,” wrote Gertrude Stein in her masterwork The World is Round, 1939, “and night well night can be all right that is just what a night can be it can be all right.” As night falls, it’s time to enjoy The Dining Club’s themed fare. The inspiration is Marco Pierre White, arguably Britain’s first celebrity chef and proponent of “classic things done very well” cooking. The vegetarian option for starter is goat’s cheese, beetroot and orange terrine, bitter leaf salad and homemade bread. Main course is walnut, blue cheese and tomato stuffed cabbage with sage and onion bonbon topped by thyme cream. More than all right.
Outside, the majestic amber light descends, turning every corbelled cornice to don’t go yet.