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The Most Disgusting Dinner Party Experience

The Most Disgusting Dinner Party Experience

Etiquette and manners are pretty customary in any situation, right? Certainly at the dinner table you wouldn’t expect any toilet-talk, spitting and dirtiness – It’s simply not tolerated… Unless you’re a lucky guest chosen to join Roald Dahl’s Mr & Mrs Twit for their wedding vow renewal.

As a part of my 21st birthday celebrations, we headed underground to The Vaults to relive the Roald Dahl book in the form of a deliciously disgusting immersive setting. With a quick read of the novel to refresh our memories and a short drive to Lambeth, we were all ready. Adorned with ‘IT’S MY 21ST’ banners and badges, needless to say I was super excited. With so many cool places to explore in the area, we started off with a wander through Leake Street tunnel. Two words: GRAFFITI HEAVEN.
Eagerly checking our watches, it was finally time. We wandered through the passageways and into the reception area. The lovely team at the front desk briefed us on the event. They explained our table for the meal was ‘Bin Bag’ and off we went – Armed with wiggly worms as drink tokens, of course.

We headed into the VIP section of The Upside-Down cocktail bar to trade in our worm tokens. This part of the bar was styled perfectly for the event. Antiqued rugs draped down from the ceiling with dimly-lit lamps and old, beaten Dr Martens as vases on the tables.

 

The stench was like none other – A sultry concoction of mulched leaves, stale washing and vintage cheddarWe squirmed at the pet leeches dubbed “French and Saunders” and watched our bartender in awe as she squirted a wormy sludge into Prosecco. (Chill – it’s just peach and raspberry puree. Delicious Bellinis!).

Armed with a Sting and Tonic (thistle garnish!), I headed back to our table where the staff presented me with a birthday balloon scribbled with a lovely message. Such a lovely touch to our Dahl day out!

After a read-up on the Order of Service for the renewal of Mr & Mrs Twits’ vows, all of the guests were rallied downstairs and into the garden.

We began with a wander through Mr & Mrs Twit’s garden before heading in for dinner. Unearthing grotesque delicacies in the Roald Dahl-esque garden, treats could be found everywhere. Canapés were nestled away under foliage, in the garden shed and even in pigeon crates! Treats for us to discover included delicious Sky Rodent Goujons, Burnt Bangers smothered in a glaze of smoky black poppy seeds, Bloodied Hearts (absolutely NOT for the faint hearted…!) and a Festering Clutch of rotten-looking quails eggs sweating away in the compost heap.

Some of the more tame offerings included Marmite-roasted nuts, a questionable soup with crackers, crispy pork scratchings and worm-like, squirming spaghetti which was writhing in the corner. My fav had to be the veined cheese paired with pineapple actually nailed to the trees.
Boy do the team elbow some meaning behind the words ‘immersive’… Our minds and mouths snapped abruptly from sampling the culinary delights. All eyes were now on a man who had wandered in to the garden. Guests were led to believe this man wasn’t part of the act and perhaps a lost guest – Infact, he was another amazing actor. After a dramatic performance, the stranger met an untimely demise upon sampling some of the foodWith the pace briskly raised by Mr & Mrs Twit, the tone was set – An uncertain, unsettling atmosphere. The whole party couldn’t quite determine whether to laugh along or feel concerned for what was ahead of us on the Roald Dahl culinary adventure…
 
Following Mr & Mrs Twit into the banquet hall through the windowless, dingy corridors, we were greeted by more rather depressed-looking monkeys with scripted, unconvincing positivity for the big eventOnce seated at our ‘Bin Bag’ table, the not-so-happy couple began regaling their guests with tales of how they came to be together. For those who had grown up with the Roald Dahl novel, it was such a treat to have a sneak peek behind the ‘closed doors’.
 

The couple, played perfectly by Christopher-Robert Barlow and Lizzy Dive, were just as I had imagined. It is true what they say – “If a person has ugly thoughts, it begins to show on the face.” The costume and makeup team, all thanks to Designer Samuel Wyer, crafted true masterpieces in the form of Roald Dahl’s Mr & Mrs TwitI don’t think they could have conjured up a more accurate display – The duo were above and beyond what I was expectingThe attention to tiny details was incredible – From the soiled, grimy clothes to every single scraggly hair on their headsThough, Mrs Twit’s deathly stare and Mr Twit’s unnerving leering cannot be painted on, this was truly remarkable acting.

Dinner was swiftly carried in by the ‘monkeys’ and each guest was presented with a bird pie (claws poking out to prove it!). Vegetarians enjoyed a thistle-topped pie filled to the brim with an earthy vegetable concoction. To our plates, we added rainbow slaw with crickets & mealworms and new potatoes sprinkled with edible dirt. Parsley liquor was bubbling away on the table with all of the guests eager to try some of that unnerving neon green sauce. The food was remarkable – The gastro geniuses of Bompas and Parr completely blew us all away. For many, it’s easy to make food taste good. To make seemingly disgusting food taste amazing is truly a talent!

For pudding, the guests were spoilt with a ‘Terrible Trifle’ – A zany, layered dessert boasting a lime jelly, lemon posset and sassafras-soaked fingers topped with edible potpourri.

After the feast, our show with Roald Dahl’s Mr & Mrs Twit continued and it was such a performance. The audience-involvement was a key aspect of the performance and I’m proud to say I spat in Mr Twit’s tankard as part of the show – Oh the perks of being birthday girl! The tension was built for a fantastic climatic scene with yet more surprises and a thrilling cannon scene to finish.

Wandering back through the passageways, we retired in the Upside Down Cocktail Bar for a nettle tea.

With just enough time to wonder how they managed to stick everything to the ceiling just like in the book, we headed back into the Leake Street tunnel each with a special bar of chocolate to mark 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl – A Wonderful keepsake from our time spent with Mr & Mrs Twit.

It’s such a shame the show has now closed as it was an incomparable, immersive experience – One I certainly will not be forgetting for a very long timeWhen the decision is made to transform a well-loved book from your childhood into a different format, it can be quite concerning. I’m so pleased to say this was such a delight and details from the Roald Dahl book were conveyed in such a great way.
 
Events such as this simply wouldn’t be possible without an amazing team of creative brains behind it. An almighty congratulations goes to Les Enfants Terribles, Bompas and Parr, ebp, Creature London and Boom for creating Roald Dahl’s Dinner at The Twits. Thank you for an incredible experience!

The gang responsible for the amazing Dinner at The Twits have created some other great events – Check out Alice’s Adventures Undergroundseriously recommend you book tickets as soon as you can due to their productions booking up SO fast.

Have you been to an event like this before? Don’t forget to leave me a comment! I’ve got a feeling immersive experiences are quickly becoming a new favourite thing of mine… 

Finally, a gentle reminder:

If you have good thoughts, it will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.

Roald Dahl’s The Twits, 1979

So get thinking up some really very lovely thoughts!

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