Calling the Coolest Shots – Aquavit

Aquavit Restaurant. Weds 11th October.
In one of our recent Rendezvous club competitions we asked members to share a great chat-up line to be in with a chance to win a magnum of Mirabeau rosé, which reminded me, conversely, of some of the best brush-off lines I’ve heard over the years (being a cheeky sort of girl, there’s been a few!).

One I’ll never forget came courtesy of my bestie and partner in crime La Grand Blonde (LGB). She has a penchant for the classic Scandinavian, tall, lean, and frankly damn good-looking man and, given that she stands 6ft in heels herself, she’s not about to settle for second best. Being the annoyingly-good-at-everything sort of girl that she is, she can rattle off some choice lines that make even Swedish sound cool. I remember her chatting away to a would-be Swedish suitor before abruptly cutting the poor chap off, only to turn to me and announce “Well he was tall, I will give him that, but Inget att hänga på julgranen (“he’s nothing to hang on the Christmas tree”). And with that we were off into the night in a blur of blonde hair, heels and chuckles.

Now something that is definitely worth hanging on the Christmas tree is everyone-in-the-knows favourite newbie in swanky St. James’ Place, the freshly Michelin starred Scandinavian restaurant Aquavit.

It’s been on my radar since it opened in December last year, and some of us shared a post-event cocktail or two there following our fabulous Franco’s rosé wine event last April. Not long after, events star, friend and all-round glamour puss Bethany Russell announced that she would be heading up the events team at Aquavit, thereby launching a star of colossal and bauble-worthy proportions. Or to calm down a little and put it more prosaically…Aquavit (schnapps) was duly sampled (hick), a party plan was penned, and a date announced to our lovely guests to-be (that would be you.)

Come the date in question, all preparations perfectly performed, our lucky guests arrived at our private room, The Stockholm room overlooking the restaurant, to find it boldly decorated in arts and crafts prints and bespoke wood trim by London-based interior architect Martin Brudnizki (another Swedish talent!), providing the perfect backdrop for our boisterous and confident crew.

Bar Manager Jun had whipped up two fabulously extravagant his-and-her cocktails to welcome us with, all overseen by unflappable restaurant manager Paola:
Freyja (Girls) Petronella, Lanique rose petal liqueur, Lime, Apple juice and Egg white
Glat Buck (boys) Bouillet bourbon, Peach liqueur, Lime cordial, Peach bitters

Sensational! And the treats didn’t stop there: we munched through the freshest canapés including Västerbotten tart, gravlax on rye, Shrimp Skagen, Crab, rye and fennel and Onion and caraway tarts. Hmm, might have overdone the latter, but hey I was buzzing around the room, so I don’t think anyone minded.

To wash all those goodies down we were treated to a tasting of Sweden’s most popular Aquavit, OP Anderson. Aquavit is a flavoured distilled spirit, what the Germans call Schnapps; like the French ‘eau-de-vie’, aquavit means ‘water of life’. Delicious, but one more and I’d have been drowning…

Needless to say the room was in very good spirits. Cosmo Landesman was looking his snogalicious self and we had great fun hatching plans for new things to do; and there were 15 new people who were just such fun to have in the room, which, as usual, felt like a group of treasured and fun friends.

Roll on our last event of the year on the 28th of November. It really has been a pleasure running Rendezvous this year.

It wasn’t just the Rendezvous team who had such an amazing time at Aquavit on Weds, thank you so much for sending us such lovely feedback.

Dear Barbara,
Thank you so much for organising such a great party last night, it was absolutely excellent, fantastic atmosphere, venue and everything else. I have met some great people, fun, diverse, interesting and smart I really hope to see again, many new faces and some that are becoming friends. You are a  relationship magician and you seem you  gather amazing crowds that gel and have fun. What a great night :))
D x

Dearest Barbara
What a fabulous evening!   A great turnout, lovely mix of interesting people, beautiful venue and they offered delicious hors d’oeuvres (of course they would, they have a Michelin star).

Dear Barbara
Thank you for organising such a stylish and fun event at Aquavit on Wed.  The venue was superb and food absolutely delicious!
Thank you again for a really lovely evening – it is always such a pleasure to see you!
A x

Dear Barbara,
Thank you for a lovely evening on Wednesday evening. I enjoyed meeting you and making new friends.  Please keep me on your mailing list, I look forward to the next one!
C x

Barbara Brudenell-Bruce

Barbara is a classic entrepreneur; her career has been defined by a series of iconic start-ups within telecoms, entertainment and fashion. She leads Investor Relations for a London-based consultancy raising capital for entrepreneurs. Alongside financial matchmaking she represents exclusive offline matchmaking agency Vida in London & Monaco, connecting their UHNW clients. Barbara’s innate sense of what it takes to fit people together, with a flair of hosting exquisite events, makes her a social anchor for all that know her.

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