The Wordrobe’s Editor Sophie Ritchie enjoys an evening of sky high feasting with DS Automobiles and London in the Sky
There are certain moments in life that evoke the sublime. You know, the feeling when every single hair upon your arms stands up straight. You can’t quite tell if you’re dreaming, because the moment around you is so abstract. Like spotting Her Majesty sitting on the tube during your morning commute. That kind of thing.
With London in the Sky, dreaming becomes reality – at 100ft up in the air. This July saw London in the Sky welcomed back to the capital for several weeks of sky-high dining at Southbank, and I was lucky enough to experience it as a guest of DS Automobiles, the title sponsor of the event for two years running. Michelin-starred dining and muscle-packed motors. Now that’s sublime.
The avant-garde London in the Sky takes our ever hungry desire for new dining experiences to the next level – quite literally. Guests are strapped in to a giant table that seats 22 (don’t worry, there’s plenty of safety checks) and then lifted 100ft up into the air for a session of feasting. For the first time ever, three tables were raised into the air for 2018’s serie. And on the evening I try it, we’re the last of the trio to be lifted.
I probably should have been nervous as we began to levitate into the air but as usual, I was chatting away and hardly noticed as we joined the clouds for a dinner served by none other than Pascal Aussignac of Club Gascon (and also a DS Automobile brand ambassador).
Despite my feet dangling precariously in the air, my appetite proved as reliable as ever as my stomach rumbled not with fear, but hunger. We begin with little plates of bread which miraculously don’t parachute into the sky around us – in fact, the entire table seems very calm.
Flyaway cutlery isn’t a problem – in fact, I learn that only one phone was dropped the year prior. What’s most peculiar is how quickly you soon normalise to your airy surroundings. But of course, the white wine pouring into glasses always helps with that too.
I begin with a beautifully presented Summer Cassoulet – a combination of girolles, Tarbais bean pulp and an intriguing tomato moss. It’s delicate and light, which is perfect for the summer night and also the surroundings.
A silky 72 hour barbecued rib of beef was on the menu for most, but as I don’t eat meat, it’s the veggie option of a Courgette Flower Primavera for my main – which looks equally delectable. Presented like a flower upon the plate, it’s bursting with flavour from the silky parsley oil, black garlic and fresh asparagus.
Next, a dish of Ossau iraty flower appears before me – as does the dessert served swiftly beside it, as we’re running out of time. With so many flights running throughout the day, sticking to a tight schedule is a must for the crews.
Torn between my savoury side and sweet tooth, I make a beeline for the dessert. Marinated strawberries with speckled shards of verbena crunch with smooth black honey pulp – it’s arranged like art with vibrant shades of red. It’s gone in a flash, and I end the evening licking my fork whilst admiring the truly awe-inspiring views around me.
From the top of the Shard and the Millennium Bridge to OXO Tower, the table offers it all and more. The skyline around us seems limitless – unlike our time frame. Before I know it, my feet are touching back down on the ground – but not before one last look at the sublime scene before me.
Words by Sophie Ritchie. To find out more about London in the Sky, click here.