Well, I made it to London on time and I'm glad to say that my hair and makeup turned out fine in the end!
I met Dan at Paddington station just before 4.30pm (after being harassed by a stinky drunken tramp who wanted to squash on the seat next to me then pushed me aside when I stood up). My first clue to the location of my surprise was that we would be going to Green Park station. The only place I knew where that was the nearest stations was Hard Rock Cafe but I was told it wasn't there ;o)
We started off with a pint of Stella and a G&T in the Reef bar to discuss the plan for the evening and eventually decided to head off towards Covent Garden. After a wander round and a glass of red wine it was time for the mystery location to be revealed.
We arrived at Green Park tube station and I saw a sign above the exit which give the game away. My birthday surprise was... Dinner at The Ritz
With an hour before our dinner reservation we went for a drink in The Rivoli Bar
. I ordered one of their famous "Pre-Dinner Cocktails", a Ritz Medley and Dan went for a Mojito.
Soon it was time for dinner in The Restaurant
which was a fantastically stunning room.
After placing our orders we were firstly greeted by a waiter with the bread trolley on which was a basket of about 6-7 different types of bread. Bewildered and confused by all the types I stuck to the white ciabatta which was sliced in front of me and then served from a silver dish while Dan decided on the tomato and olive bread.
Next came what seemed to be an expresso but in fact was an appetizer with compliments of the chef. It was a kind of fish soup which I thought wasn't too bad (not being a lover of fish) and Dan thought was very good.
Our starters were served, mine complete with a silver dome cover! I chose the Duck served with broad beans and peas while Dan opted for the Smoked Salmon served with herb blini and creme fraiche. The half of lemon was wrapped in muslin and tied with a yellow ribbon so you didn't get any pips or anything in your dinner!
For our main meal I had Lamb Cutlets while Dan had the Sirloin Steak. Both were served with chunky chips and green beans and both were absolutely gorgeous. The meal was washed down with a very nice bottle of South African Cabernet-Sauvignon.
We couldn't refuse the desserts which were as fabulous as everything else. We both went for one from the chocolate section. Mine was a chocolate and caramel creation while Dan had a
chocolate fondant with raspberry ripple ice cream. Divine!
It was an absolutely fabulous night and if your credit card can survive the damage then I'd recommend everyone to go. We're already starting a collection to go again! ;o)
Thanks to Dan for arranging it for me, it's the best birthday surprise ever and I love you lots!