Every now and then we take a break from “things to do with the kids” and look (rather desperately) for an excuse for a little “me time”. And no, by “me time” I don’t mean time to chop vegetables for yet another chicken casserole or carefully laying out school clothes so they’re ready for the morning. By “me time”, I mean the opportunity to do something that is genuinely a treat for myself – a chance to rediscover my identity, or whatever is left of it, and set aside the labels of Mum, Wife, Auntie, Name-Tag-Sewing-Person and everything else just for a moment.
Every now and then it also means dusting off that beautifully flouncy Frost French dress (for £100 it hides all sins without looking mumsy – result!) and patent leather heels and trotting out the door for a glass of champagne in the most sparkly part of London I can find.
And so with a rather lofty goal in mind, I set out the find the most luxurious London venue which would provide just the right spot for a fabulous mums night out. And here it is…
My previous experiences of The Athenaeum hotel in Mayfair involved an afternoon in their Winnie the Pooh-themed children’s play room, and a visit to the rather sumptuous Whisky Bar (for a coffee, I swear!) and sunny and elegant Garden Room. In October this year, The Athenaeum transformed their Garden Room into an intimate evening venue, an excuse to find a babysitter if I’ve ever seen one…
The Pudding Parlour features an array of desserts baked by their French pastry chef, with everything from rhubarb crumble and homemade macaroons to puddings especially created by The Boy Who Bakes, Edd Kimber, winner of the Great British Bake Off 2010. There is also a selection of pudding wines and champagnes which they promise will be the perfect counterpoint to their puddings.
Despite the 5 star venue, the Pudding Parlour is surprisingly affordable – £10 for as many puddings as you like, or £15 including your first glass of wine. It seems the perfect alternative to spending a small fortune on dinner with friends, or to heading out to a noisy bar – I wouldn’t be surprised if Londoners begin following the Montreal tradition of “let’s meet for dessert“, and treating themselves to a few sweet treats somewhere like the Pudding Parlour.
We didn’t need much more convincing, so the energetic Laura (London-Baby) and I have rounded up a handful of our favourite London bloggers and are heading out for pre-Christmas pudding and drinks at the Pudding Parlour very soon.
We’ve invited a few food and wine enthusiasts, bloggers whose love for London is positively infectious, and some supermums who really deserve a night out, including BritMums’ Jennifer Howze, Liz Jarvis, Not a Notting Hill Mum, North London Mums, Babes About Town, Me and My Shadow, West London Mum, South of the River Mum, the lovely Saira Khan, and other fabulous parent bloggers.
To say we are excited is an understatement – just going out to our local pub without the children is usually enough excitement for the month, let alone a genuine excuse to put on makeup and to wear clothes that aren’t decorated with a little line of toddler-has-a-perpetually-runny-nose slime.
Watch this space as we’ll be reporting back to let you know if the Pudding Parlour really is a fabulous London mum’s night out!
If you could choose a lovely spot for a mums night out (anywhere!) where would it be?
Many thanks in advance to The Athenaeum who have kindly offered to treat us to some puddings and wines.