Barry's birthday celebrations have finally drawn to a close! They started in early July, when his daughter took him to watch the Ladies Quarter Finals tennis matches at Wimbledon, and continued until last week when he and his son went to a 20-20 cricket match at Lords. In between there was dinner and an overnight stay at The Waterside Inn, a vintage Tea Party in the garden, and a superb dinner party at home.
The dinner party was Barry's birthday gift from our friends Sally & Steve and Kim & Ian: they organised a brilliant chef to prepare an amazing meal for us all in our own home! Must admit, it felt rather strange having a dinner party without our having to prepare, cook or clear up anything - all we did was lay the table!
James is a very talented chef and prepared a really stunning menu, while his mum Jan and girlfriend Frankie waited on us and cleared away afterwards - Jan even cleaned the oven! It was a wonderful occasion and a really memorable birthday gift from four amazing friends. The evening began with a magnum of Mumm champagne, before we waded our way through another 8 (yes, 8!) bottles of red & white burgundy, pudding wine and vintage port, all courtesy of Ian & Kim.
The surprise menu and included homemade bread; a delicious pea & ham amuse bouche; crab croquettes with a fantastic crab risotto; succulent lamb cannon, rack & pie; and a divine chocolate & gold leaf dessert with orange sorbet. After such a sensational meal we struggled valiantly with a splendid cheese course courtesy of Sally & Steve. It was an absolutely amazing evening, and one we shall never forget - thank you so much Sally, Steve, Kim and Ian - and James, of course! We are SO lucky to have such fantastic and thoughtful friends :)
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