Together, working with local community groups, charities and organisations, we are celebrating T.S Eliot’s poem ‘The Waste Land’ and Turner Contemporary’s present exhibition, ‘Journeys with The Waste Land’ exploring the poem and it’s influences through visual art.
Held at the magical Garden Gate Project amongst the plants and greenery, for each night of the supper club, you will be treated to a 7 course feast, and immersed in an experience of taste, smell, sight and sound, with musicians, actors, and artists.
27th & 28th April 6.30pm – late.
My menu references the poem, and is inspired by T.S. Eliot, his life, his letters, and his enjoyment of good food and drink (notably gin!), using seasonal and locally sourced and foraged ingredients. The menu is also inspired by foods of the 1920’s (Eliot wrote part of the poem here in Margate in 1921 and it was published 1922).
The feast is loosely based on a Chinese menu (at the time of writing the poem Eliot had almost converted to Buddhism), but also the popularity of Chinese food exploded from the 1910’s in America with the opening of luxury “Chop Suey Palaces”. In the U.K. Chinese noodle shops and diners, catering for Chinese seamen, were popping up in the dock areas of Liverpool and Limehouse in the East End of London (where there was an infamous Chinese female opium dealer called Chinatown Annie!) and the first Chinese restaurant in London was established in 1908.
But I also reference Sir Harold Acton (a ‘Dandy’ who was the influence of the character Anthony Blanche in Brideshead Revisited, who in the film of the same name, is shown chanting ‘The Waste Land’ from his balcony at Oxford). Acton was passionate about the Chinese language and food (he later lived and studied in China), and employed a Chinese cook (Chong Sung) in London who introduced him to exotic ingredients of “cumquats, ginger, rice puddings, vermicelli, lychees, mushrooms etc”
Plus the early 1920’s would’ve been so much fun, luxury, hedonism, music, explosion of women’s fashion and women’s rights. These were the boom years with people experiencing a major shift in taste towards ‘modern’ living. This was reflected in the world of food and drink and the focus was on the future and all that’s new. For the wealthy, eating at restaurants and sipping cocktails increasingly became an essential part of life and there was huge enthusiasm for canned food, ice cream and convenience foods.
Hurry Up It’s Time Menu
Gin & Drugs Dear Lady
Gin, wild fennel, lemon & pomegranate,
Botanical cocktail with apple & champagne
Wood Fired Oyster & Seaweed Balls
Wood Fired Sesame, Black Forbidden Rice and Asparagus Toasts
Sweet and Sour Rhubarb Chilli Dipping Sauce
& Nettle Dressing
Joyce Chen’s Peking Ravioli (dumplings)
Tang Yuan Dumplings
Both served in a green tea broth with locally foraged morels
Cornet Chop Suey
Char Sui Cola Gammon Chop Suey
Char Sui Cola Tofu Chop Suey
Homemade noodles, spring greens, locally foraged wild mushrooms,
Dulse, wild asparagus and Nanohana (Rapeseed buds)
& a handful of Pine Shoot dust.
Lychee and Banana Ice Lollies
Chong Sung’s Rice pudding
Almond Milk Rice Pudding
Cumquat and Loquat Compote
Curve Coffee Candy Floss
& wild violet space dust.
Sweet and Savoury Combination Birthday Cheesecake
Eliot was once given a ‘combination cake’ to jointly celebrate four birthdays, including his own.
The cake maker Meg Nason, continued to bake and send a birthday cake to Eliot for many years.
Eliot was also a great cheese aficionado.
This is a layered sweet and savoury cheesecake based on the flavours of four of Eliot’s favourite cheeses.
Sweet and Savoury Combination Birthday Plant Based Cake
both served with pickled radishes& pickled spring onions
Chessboard of Charcoal and Arrowroot Crackers
Homemade Gingerbread Fortune Cookies
Hurry Up Please It’s Time!
Subject to change