Ever since I first came across Kerstin Rodgers (MsMarmite) blog The English Can Cook a couple of years ago, I became interested in Underground Supperclubs and Tea Rooms. I’d heard about the Hidden Tea Room in London and said to myself ‘I can do that’. Kerstin Rodgers being the pioneer of this Underground Supperlcub movement in the UK 2 years ago, has, in book, lead where others have followed. Even High Street restaurants appear to be hitching themselves to the ‘Underground’ bandwagon for a while with their ‘pop-up’ events. Whilst I have nothing against the pop-up genre, some of these events are extremely interesting even when they have nothing to do with food.
But I am routing for the underground in your home supperclub/tearoom. The social media networking for places, the menu planning, the moving of furniture, dealing with guests, seeing the conversation flowing between your guests and being able to join in when you can. Oh and of course the clearing up afterwards.
Kerstin’s Fans of supperclubs site now has almost 2k members, with over 200 supperclubs listed around the world, all members are definitely fans.
This movement, now very popular in London, is now slowly moving it’s way North. As far North in fact as Edinburgh, as far South as Dorset. Now moving over to Wales and Ireland. Check out the Supperclubs by location list if you don’t believe me.
Supperclubs and Underground restaurants and lets not forget Secret Tea Rooms offer a different kind of experience. It’s often a fixed menu, people arrive at the same time, sit around large tables, enabling guests to get to know each other, and in some cases make new friends. There is never the problem of going to one of these events on your own, because you will be guaranteed that everyone will talk to you and make you feel most welcome. Where can you get that in a High Street Restaurant. More often it could be a table for one with zero conversation, unless you like that sort of thing.
So lets hear it for the Underground Supperclub and of course The Secret Tea Rooms that are now growing in strength around the country. If you find there is one near you, support and encourage it, tell your friends about them. Get to know the chef/host. This in turn will create an outlet for the wonderful creative chefs/bakers that are out there and in turn will be supporting local producers where they will most probably be buying there produce from.
If you fancy creating your own supperclub, but not too sure how you go about it. Kerstin (msMarmite) is holding an event ‘How to Start and Run a Supperclub‘, where I’ve been invited to be a guest speaker. Here I will be able to tell you about the ins and outs of running my ‘Secret Tea Room’.
If music be the food of love, play on: Duke Orsino: Twelfth Night Act 1, scene 1, 1–3