They say you should always feed a cold. So it was with this in mind that I braved the elements of a frosty January night with a foggy head and taste buds in need of vital CPR, to journey to the Lake House, home of Anna Hafsteinsson and venue for Jersey’s leading supper club, The Bean Pot.
Born in London under the name The Clapton Pot, Anna established the Bean Pot in Jersey just over 15 months ago as a way for islanders to come together, eat good local produce, swap stories and meet new people. A concept which backfired this month to spectacular effect with the majority of diners coincidentally knowing each other from various walks of Jersey life! A true Bean Pot first.
Against a theatrical backdrop of a home with paper lanterns, fairy lights and the odd decorative pineapple thrown in for good measure, Anna displayed all the humour and chat of a good hostess, animatedly taking us through her dishes, the ingredients used and inside recipe secrets. In the face of adversity they spent the day battling against frozen pipes which almost delivered up the first Bean Pot raw menu, but Anna and guest co-host for the evening Chris Scott most certainly got the party started serving up a starter of barbecued chicken tikka skewers with a peanut and coriander chutney alongside a roaring log fire.
You know you’re onto a winner when your welcoming drink is a generous gin and tonic served straight out of a vase easily mistaken for a vat. But generous is a fair word to apply to Anna’s approach to a dining concept and indeed Anna herself. Our table was quickly filled with restaurant worthy Indian dishes such as slow cooked pulled lamb, roasted aubergine and squash curry and shredded chicken murgh malai and glasses were attentively (and repeatedly) refilled. Such a banquet was laid before us that I feel confident her family were eating Indian food for the rest of that week.
Anna’s love of cooking shines through the event and she more that hits her brief of serving up seasonal delicacies and highlighting great local produce as she compliments the night’s dishes with gourmet dips and chutneys courtesy of the Chili Kitchen. But cooking isn't Anna’s only talent as she can often be heard singing a ditty as she cooks being a member of Jersey’s Songwriters Society.
Indian night was exactly the right pitch to make, a winter warmer that revitalised me and breathed life back into my cold ridden body. I left an evening of laughs shared with new (and old but somewhat forgotten) friends over good food far too early and am left longing to be back in the warmth of a hearty kitchen with the company of supper songstress and her kitchen crew.
At a steal for a ticket, which are fast becoming coveted items with every new event release, everyone should go and visit the Bean Pot for a true Jersey dining experience. Come with an open heart, an empty stomach and a curious mind and be prepared to sample the best of the Bean Pot. Singing, stewing and getting sozzled, there’s so much more to discover than just great food. Move over Jamie Oliver, there’s a singing chef in town!
Find out more about the Bean Pot here.