Archive for August 19th, 2008

Beefsteak & Burgundy Club – Bangkok

Tuesday, August 19th, 2008

The monthly Beef & Burgundy lunch for August was held at Beccofino Italian Restaurant in Bangkok.
Following is an official account of the lunch with minor editing:
Beccofino received us back after an absence of two years. It was apparent that several members are regulars at this popular Italian restaurant on Thong Lor. A total of 16 were expected and the number grew to 17 with the arrival of Michael Holt from Auckland B&B. In deference to the restaurant’s provenance, proceedings commenced with the quaffing of Prosecco, that increasingly popular vino frizzante from the hills behind Venice; this one was very good and matched well the canapés presented by Chef Angelo. Minus one (usual) culprit, we sat down to lunch in the main restaurant in the “expensive” seats, namely those nearest the window from where the comings and goings of the Thong Lor hoi polloi could be observed. The antipasta misto alla Italiano was superb: a succulent mixture of Italian meats and Mediterranean vegetables. With it came Barth Rene Reisling 2005 from French Alsace and a history lesson from Tim Randall. Wine spokesperson Julian Merrill thought it was over-acidic until he had consumed some food, then it received somewhat begrudging approval. Next came risotto al funghi porcini e zafferino. I’m not a risotto lover, but this was good, and those who were declared it to be excellent. Peter Williams had chosen Villa Cernas Chianti Classico Riserva 2003 to go with this. Julian’s first thought was too much tannin but confessed it matched the food extremely well. The main course comprised Grilled Ozzie Wagyu-style beef with sautéed potatoes. I thought it was excellent, being cooked to perfection, moist, flavoursome and not such a large portion that anyone was over-faced by the size. We drank (the last of Peter’s) Fermoy Estate Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon 2000 with this, and very nice it was too.
Proceedings were concluded with heaps and heaps of Italian soft cheeses followed by Chef Angelo serving each of us with a selection of some carefully prepared and very tasty desserts. Earlier we had sung
Happy Birthday to Soi Dog Grahame Fox who was UK-bound the next day to spend the actual anniversary in a Scottish dog-house. Mark Ryan, food spokesperson, enlivened the proceedings by bestowing an appropriate number of “Woofs” upon each course. Foxy translated this for our benefit into praise for the work done the staff. Michael Holt assured one and all that a warm welcome for B&B dinner would be extended to anyone visiting Auckland on the last Tuesday of each month.

About Beefsteak & Burgundy Club:
Each Club limits its membership to 30. There are all male clubs, all ladies clubs and mixed clubs.
The objects of the Club: “To promote good fellowship and goodwill amongst all sections of the community. To further the education of its members and the community in the appreciation and understanding of good food and wines.”
Branches are as follows:

LONDON 55 Male London

TOKYO 126 Male Tokyo

SUDBURY 193 Mixed Sudbury
STONETOWN 227 Male Stonetown

BEIJING 212 Male Beijing
SHANGHAI 238 Male Shanghai
SHANGHAI LADIES 257 Ladies Shanghai

BRAZIL 235 Male Sao Paulo

SINGAPORE 254 Male Singapore

BANGKOK 249 Male Bangkok

St Francis 214 Male San Francisco

Copenhagen 256 Male Copenhagen

Trailer Happiness Bar – London

Tuesday, August 19th, 2008

177 Portobello Road
London, W11 2DY
Tel.+44 (0)207 727 2700
Opening Hours: Tues-Fri: 5pm-1am; Sat:7pm-1am; Sun: 6pm-10.30pm

Think Tiki drinks and you immediately imagine the South Pacific and Trader Vic’s, and when prepared properly, there is nothing more thirst-quenching than a tropical cocktail. Tiki mixologist, Dale DeGroff can mix a mean drink including the dangerous, incendiary kind. Set in trendy Notting Hill on the boho-chic Portobello, the décor is coconut retro kitsch, with dark walls and the odd Tretchikoff on the wall, the South Africa’s master of the kitsch genre.
The crowd is typical Notting Hill cool, which includes celebrities, media tarts and fashionistas.

Nibbles: Uncle Leroy’s Lamb & Lemon Racks, Alabama Black Snake Sesame Shrimp, Dr. Jay’s Green Chilli Fireballs, Trailer Happiness Smokin’ Sausage Salsa and Where You Been All My Life? Crispy Roast Duck.

A garlanded plastic hula-girl stands at the top of the stairway that leads down to this basement bar, which is more tacky and heavy on kitsch than you could shake a plastic palm tree at, and fortunately for you, the downhill climb is to enter and not to leave otherwise, the exit could be fraught with mishaps!