Wednesday 24 September 2008

Sad but true..

I am very excited.

Back in March when I was planning our October trip to London I decided I wanted to eat at Petrus.

I had been impressed by Marcus Wareing on the Great British Menu and had heard good things about Petrus. I managed to get a table, which in itself was no mean feat as they were booked up till January 2009. You think I am obsessive about planning my trips, it's out of necessity. However, once the reservation was made I relaxed and thought no more about it until a rift of seismic proportions occurred between Gordon Ramsey and Marcus Wareing.

Those Chefs. They always seem to have the need to usurp their master.

Then the trouble started. I got a call from GR holdings to say that they were very sorry but that lease with the Berkeley was up and Petrus would be moving so they had to cancel my reservation and oh so very sweetly asked if I wanted a reservation at any of the other GR restuarants. Out of curiosities sake I ask about RHR, thinking that it would be good PR on their part if they were able to offer that instead. But no, of course they were not. So, I delcined and said actually, I was more interested in Marcus Wareing than Petrus per se and left it at that.

I read on various places that it was likely that Marcus would be opening up his own place, so i set about getting a table there. The people at GR holdings seem very sneaky though. When I called the restaurant direct it was still manned by Gr staff and all they could offer were GR holdings reservations. Undeterred I telephoned and emailed the director of food and drink at the Berkeley stating my interest in a reservation at the new restaurant when it opened. I got a acknowledgement but that they could nit help me yet, then nothing.

Until I read a post on Chowhound about it.

My interest piqued, I called the Concierge at the Berkeley only to land someone in it. 'Oh no Madam' said the London geezer on the other end. 'We are not taking reservations yet'. 'Oh yes you are' said I and tried to explain to him what had been said. 'Oh no we are not' said he. I said 'well then what's this all about?' He said 'I don't know but I will ask Marcus who is standing next to me'.

Cool, thought I, straight from the horses mouth.
The end result was that they took my mobile and email and a couple of months later I received an email from Mrs Wareing, no less, confirming my table for 4 in October at Marcus Wareing at the Berkeley. Hurrah!

I think the next year will be interesting with these two vying for top slot in London. Already there is media speculation about who will win. Wareing has a lot to prove in his first year in that his restaurant will be un-starred and he will have to prove he can consistently work at the 2 star level, before trying to oust RHR as the only 3 star in London.
Let the battle commence!!


Libby said...

I ate at Petrus in June, just before the changeover. (currently writing about it, in fact, at Trust me, it will be one of the BEST meals of your life. Totally worth the wait. Marcus rocks! :)

curious eater said...

Hello! What did you have? I have been looking out for recent reviews but they are few are far between which seems odd. The guy from Bloombergs seemed to like it..
Will have a look at your blog. Thanks for taking the time to comment.