Mar 8, 2016

London’s Best Culinary Corporate Entertainment

Food and drink make great ice breakers – and making food and drink provides some of the best corporate entertainment and networking opportunities. Let’s face it, we all eat and drink and have opinions about it – that’s why it works so well.

So if you’re planning a corporate away day or trying to think of some kind of teambuilding exercise, don’t make your colleagues stand in a cold, rainy field learning archery or something equally random, look no further than our list below, guaranteed to get everyone chatting & bonding but also sure to be an enjoyable and tasty experience.

Some for the foodies….

Preparing and cooking your own food brings out the hunter gatherer in many a boardroom executive.

A top cook & dine experience can be found at either of L’atelier des Chefs’ two central London locations in St. Paul’s and Oxford Circus, catering for intimate groups or parties of up to 100 guests. With many blue chip companies already regulars for their relationship-building and corporate entertainment, and over 630 private events a year, its TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence is a serious accolade.

One of the best kept secrets for intimate kitchen entertaining is Mark Hix’s private Kitchen Library. Hidden away in the bowels of Tramshed and designed in his fabulously unique 70’s retro chic style, the room is his exclusive salon-kitchen area. It’s exclusively available for up to 12 guests to enjoy a bespoke cooking event and dinner.

Over in Liverpool Street, Andaz hotel’s Private Studio is a fabulously versatile ‘signature’ area for up to 45 guests (seated/60 standing). Complete with its own kitchen, exposed wine cellar and long bars it’s a perfect modern space for interactive wine tastings or sushi-making classes.

Keeping it simple, try Maze Grill’s Butcher’s Block, where up to 14 guests can not only be taught how to cook steak by top chefs but also sit down to an exclusive meat-fest featuring different cuts of steak, guaranteed to get the culinary – and creative – juices flowing.

Outside London Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s River Cottage offers a day away from London, soaking in the idyllic surrounds of Devon, while learning to bake bread, make salami or any number of other creative culinary techniques.

Some for the wine lovers…

We’re utterly in awe of Berry Bros & Rudd’s tasting rooms. Behind the antiquated St James’s front lies a variety of rooms from old cellars dating back to the 16th century and a perhaps even more impressive, their new Sussex Gallery – a dual level private dining area and tasting venue specifically designed for tastings with state of the art acoustics and striking architecture. A wide range of tasting packages are available, although bespoke tastings can also be arranged on request.

While we’re on the subject of wine cellars The Stafford hotel has another fabulous subterranean gem dating back to 1741. Take a wander through the largest wine cellar in London (bar Buckingham Palace), marvel at some of its 500+ wine varieties and learn from their passionate sommeliers. With space for 80 standing or 44 seated, it’s guaranteed to get guests mingling and relaxing, while the war memorabilia from when the cellars were used as an air raid shelter is guaranteed to provide even the most reticent guest with some conversation.

At Brigade, Bar & Bistro the old fire station on Tooley Street, provides a unique space for corporate entertainment with a distinctive socially minded perspective. Wine sampling and cookery classes can be arranged to as part of hosting meetings and events- all delivered in conjunction with the Beyond Food Foundation, providing employment and life chances for vulnerable people.

Vivat Bacchus provides the ultimate food and drink tasting combo – with cheese and wine private tastings for between 12-15 people in both their Farringdon and London Bridge branches. Tastings are bespoke and tailored to client budget but range from old vs new world, South Africa and round the world tours to the VB signature experience.

And finally, with over 160 different varieties of tea, Fortnum & Mason’s Tasting Room provides the ultimate elegant setting for up to 10 guests to learn about the nation’s favourite hot drink. Flip the beautiful marble counter into a cocktail bar for some post-tasting fun or even take your group downstairs to The Crypt – a secret wood panelled room – for a memorable sharing-platter based dinner of sumptuous beef rib, leg of lamb or whole baked seabass.

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