I succumbed to one of those bargain theatre tickets after Christmas and booked David and I in to see The 39 Steps on a week night (always cheaper). As marathon training has made me a bit of a whirlwind, I designated it a ‘date night’ and booked us a slightly nicer than everyday restaurant to make it special!
After a browse around on Google maps and Toptable I selected Inamo restaurant which is local to the theatre with an Oriental menu and theme. It’s my current obsession, sushi, miso, dim sum, gimme gimme, gimme!
There are projectors above every table and you select your meal using an interface on the table. We had booked a set menu through toptable and the waitress who sat us showed us how to access that particular menu using the system. It’s fun being able to pick your own ‘table cloth’ and play games on the table but it does make for awful pictures!
The system lets you see what your meal would look like on your plate. This is what our spicy aubergine starter looked like on the projection. Because we were on the set meal we had to choose everything upfront. When my salmon main was projected on to my plate I’m ummed and ahhed about ordering a side dish and didn’t.
Our starters were delicious, we opted for chicken satay and marinated spicy aubergine and shared them both. Because you don’t have to wait for anyone to take your order the service is really speedy and makes for a great pre theatre option (it’s also about a 2 minute walk from the Criterion).
When my dinner arrived I literally got salmon with garnish and suspect if I had been ordering with a waiter they would have advised (correctly) for me to have a side dish. David’s meal was similar and we were very glad to have ordered dessert.
Desserts were delicious but I think we were both feeling a little disappointed by our small mains. I had Creme Brulee, with very interesting presentation resulting in very little brulee and David had a trio of sorbets.
Overall I enjoyed Inamo but we did feel the need to buy a packet of Minstrels to see us through the play.
Looking around at the other tables and peeking at the full menu I wish we hadn’t had the set menu. I probably won’t go again, I enjoyed the gimmick of ordering on our interactive tables but it seems to me that the set menu doesn’t do them justice which is a real shame.
Do try them for a pre theatre meal though, just order from the main menu!
Onwards to the rest of our evening. We headed the very short walk to The Criterion to see The 39 Steps. I was surprised at how tiny the theatre was. I quickly realised why our seats were so cheap we had a whole row to our selves! I shan’t give too much away but we enjoyed the play as a cheap and cheerful night out. It’s a very simple premise, production and staging which would be great introduction to theatre for newbies. 4 actors play all the parts which makes for lots of laughs.
Having recently seen Jeeves and Wooster which is a similar style with 3 actors playing all the parts I would encourage the seasoned theatre goers among you to pay the extra and see that. For a cheap date night with laughs 39 Steps is just the ticket!
Have you been to the theatre recently?
Any restaurant recommendations for me?