It’s time to dispel the myth that everything has to be expensive at hotels. Yes, the mini-bar in your hotel room might be pricey, but there are always great value deals to be found. Firmdale hotels run some of the most luxurious boutique hotels in London and New York. We went to check out their film club package offering recently at Brasserie Max at their Covent Garden hotel.
It’s hard not to fall in love with Firmdale hotels. They all have the boutique feel and carefully decorated with tasteful artwork, which is exactly how you would like your living room or dining room to look like if budget was not an issue. The Brasserie Max decor is no exception: it feels warm, cosy and homely yet elegant at the same time. The clientele are all dressed appropriate to the refined surroundings, you do see a good selection of smart jackets and evening dresses.
The film club offering is from a set menu. Whilst it doesn’t necessarily use the top end ingredients from the main à la carte menu, it certainly does show off the flair and proficiency of the chefs in their kitchen team. The crispy chicken tempura was crunchy and not overly oily and is complemented well with bok choy, shitake and shallot salad and lime and chilli soy dressing.
Grilled salmon with lemon hollandaise sauce was executed with pinpoint precision, the fish not overcooked and the seafood taste lifted by the unusual use of lemon hollandaise. The roast lamb was marginally too lean but you cannot fault the taste with the addition of garlic and thyme jus and even the crushed potatoes were flavoursome with an injection of wild garlic and butter.
Lemon tart, crème fraiche was the ideal dessert to have if you are worried about bloatedness before sitting through a 2 hour film. Its citrusy notes help to cut through the more fatty food you might have eaten for your starter and main course. The tart had a firm texture and was not overly sweet.
They have an extremely comprehensive wine list and they happily allow you to take your unfinished bottle of wine into their private cinema room . We sampled a bottle of Sancerre Rosé, Domaine Vincent Delaporte, France 2014. It’s crisp and fruit-packed with red currant and raspberry aromas. It might be a pricey wine, but that underlines the fact 2014 was a vintage year for the Loire Valley.
After you’ve wined and dined, it’s time to make your way down to their luxury private cinema with complimentary popcorn included. They show the latest popular films including Oscar winners and summer blockbusters. 3 courses plus film and popcorn costs £40 and considering a film ticket in Leicester Square could costs £22.50, this really shows there are some great deals to be found at hotels.