London Business School, Baker Street

You wait ages for a review then two come along at once.  A bit like buses, eh?  Well, a bit like waiting at a bus stop for ages then two buses come along going on a totally different route than the one you require.  But, hey, maybe pop on board anyway?  It’s late, it’s dark and there might be an old tranny flashing his stockings and suspenders for you to perv at.

By the way, that is not a metaphor.  I’m not that old.  And I’m wearing tights, not stockings.

Shit I really need to rescue this now.

So for reasons that I cannot allude to…let’s call it a rehearsal for my mi5 practical application (by the way, I am most certainly not applying to work for mi5), I was inside London Business School last week.  And I was forced to use their canteen.  The choice was salad, make your own pizza, lasagna or a roast dinner – presciently advertised as a Sunday Rollover.

There was only one real choice.  Yes the God’s have conspired to allow you to have yet another roast dinner review.

Now unfortunately, unless you study there, visit someone there or just simply confidently walk past security pretending to be a student to get a cheap dinner (ahem), then this will not be the most useful review to you.  On the off-chance that you do visit there, you can check today’s menu here.

Once I paid my £5.85, I sat down at one of the school canteen style tables and took one for the team.

The first thing to note is that at the top, hidden away, is a portion of salad.  Yes, salad.  On a roast dinner.  There is nothing wrong with salad in the same way that there is (probably) nothing wrong with Timmy Mallet, but neither belong anywhere near the table when there is a roast dinner involved.

Surely tantamount to blasphemy?

The Chantenay carrots were a mixed bunch.  The smaller ones had been cooked enough to class as edible, the larger ones were crunchier than your average apple.

Then there were a few florets of broccoli.  A little yellow in places and somewhat over-blanched (doesn’t show up too well).  They looked like they had a touch of manflu but they were edible enough.

Edibility then took a turn downhill with the roast potatoes.  Given that many full-price dining establishments struggle to get roast potatoes to a vaguely acceptable standard, my expectations were low.  My expectations, however, were not even met as these were truly some of the worst roast potatoes I have had in a long time.  Cold, hard in the middle, rather greasy – I’m not even sure they were actually roasted.  Not even one redeemable feature.  But it gets worse.

Now I’ve made Yorkshire puddings before that were flat. I’ve burnt Yorkshire puddings. I’ve made them too soggy and also too crispy. But I’ve never made them taste like someone has poured a bucket of the North Sea down my throat before.  This was quite the most rancid Yorkshire pudding possible, the saltiest accompaniment to any roast dinner I have ever attempted.  I finished it but I have no idea why.  It was even served upside down.

The beef was OK.  I have had worse – at least it was pink in the middle.  But it wasn’t as nice as it looked prior to carving, perhaps the gravy was part to blame, perhaps my attempts at diluting the disgustingness of the Yorkshire pudding by mixing them was partly to blame.  But also was the occasional gristle and general lower quality product I was served.

Yes I know I paid just £5.85.

And then the gravy.  Basically water, with a few drops of oil and something to make it brown.  Oh yeah, don’t forget the salt.  Definitely do not forget the salt and maybe put a bit more in for a laugh?  The antithesis of good gravy…maybe it actually was the North Sea?  Same kind of colour.

I have not had too many worse roast dinners in my life, and boy I have had quite a few roast dinners in my time.  I’m going to give it a 2.30 out of 10.

But at least it did only cost me £5.85.

Which I guess is the moral that London Business School were trying to teach – keep your prices low and your quality lower.  Well, it works for McDonald’s.

If you are lucky (ie I have someone to go to dinner with) then I might be back next week.

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