Chocolate and Whisky: The mystery deepened.

28-50 By Night | 76 Jason Court | Wigmore Street | W1U 2SJ
Thursday 26th January

We knew, on paper, that this pairing made perfect sense. In their purest forms, both chocolate and spirits are made from a simple set of ingredients that combine to produce a whole variety of diverse flavours. But nothing quite prepared us for the buzz this event would create in the already atmospheric setting of 28:50 By Night. Our senses were taken on a journey of sensory pleasure.

We were privileged to have the foremost trio of experts, Chantal Coady, the only person ever to be awarded an OBE for services to chocolate making, event host Paul Flatts of Whisky Drams, and Lucy Clare Tidal Rum’s Ambassador, who led our guests through the blind tasting. 28:50’s Head Sommelier Jules Bensacq presided over the whole event, taking care of the details right from the planning stage to shaking and serving.

Three shimmering glasses of varying shades of gold were lined up in front of us to smell, swirl and taste. And what a pleasure these were.  Voted the world’s best whiskey, Green Spot Leoville Barton was paired with delicious Grenada Special Cuvée 85% Broken Dark Chocolate, bringing out the clove and nutmeg in the whiskey. Lucy took us on the Tidal Rum journey, with a sense of freedom that the sea awakened in us with the subtle coastal flavours, paired adventurously with white chocolate with foraged fennel and cardamom. Jules guided us through the pure pleasure of the Delamain Pale & Dry XO Premier Cru Grande Champagne Cognac, which Chantal paired with chocolate-coated candied orange.  Such extravagant flavour pairings.

A special treat was Chantal sharing the unique taste of raw cocoa, a smooth fruity, tropical, tart, and naturally sweet subtle flavour. 

The Chocolate Detective team is working with cocoa farmers in Grenada and highlighting sustainable chocolate made at grassroots level (“Tree to Bar”) and keeping value in local economies. The voyage this chocolate follows is 99% emission-free, and it’s made even more special by watching this short video and appreciating its uniqueness. Sailboat Chocolate.

Thank you to the Mixology Team at 28:50, who managed multiple glasses during the tasting. They calmly went on to create a sea of cocktails with the Tidal Rum; Old Fashioned and Espresso Martinis spun out of their shakers.

Some lovely feedback –

Hi Barbara, thanks for a fun night.  Great fun and made many new friends also good to reconnect with a few people I hadn’t seen for a while !!  Cheers. R


Thank you, Barbara for a wonderful evening. I had too much fun xx


Dear Barbara, thank you so much for a lovely evening, let me know when the next one is please! 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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About the Italian Job; a Marylebone party

The Italian Job Party l The Italian Greyhound, Marylebone

Wednesday 2nd November 2022

Our Italian Job party was a roaring success despite the absence of the fleet of red, white, and blue minis.  Michael Caine’s character Charlie Croker would have agreed it was a party with the spirit of dolce vita. Beep Beep!

Our stylish party was in the elegant Italian Greyhound restaurant, our private downstairs space was filled to the brim. The atmosphere was warmed by pleasantly low-decibel jazz.

The room was in excellent spirits, with at least 35 new people who were just such fun to have there and who mixed enthusiastically with our regulars, which, as usual, felt like a group of treasured and fun friends.

More marvellous memories were made in this W1 basement, adding to the many we have gathered over the year Including our delight to see some new couples move their conversation upstairs to the dining room of the graceful hound. The menu is perfect to share and to enjoy sharing conversations a plenty.

Thank you to the team at the Italian Greyhound for being such welcoming hosts.

Some lovely feedback –

Thank you for the wonderful event on Wednesday night. It’s such a lovely place you have created, it feels safe and inviting and easy to meet people and make friends, just delightful, thank you.


Another great party, everyone was very friendly. You always manage to assemble a good mix of interesting and fun people.  Thank you, Barbara, for being such a great hostess, looking forward to the next one!


Thank you, Barbara, it was a lovely, lively evening – such a great turn out. Thoroughly enjoyable as always! Well worth braving the lashing rain. The evening always seems to go so quickly, catching up with old acquaintances and making new friends, and then all to soon it’s time to head home….


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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Digital Dating Fatigue

Swipe Fever

When we first tried digital apps in our late thirties, we were mesmerized by the bells and whistles of app dating. How deliciously exciting we found everyone.

On the face of it, there were so many gorgeous single people with dogs, beautiful lives, and fantastic interests. We had a niggling suspicion a lot of creativity went into these profiles.

You’ve swiped right, you’ve swiped left, you’ve Coffee-Met-Bageled, Hinged, and become Restless. Is digital swiping really how we’re supposed to find flings, friends, partners, and more? If you’re kind of into that sweet swiping sensation, you may be addicted, or you may be fatigued.

App Fatigue

A few years on the apps and a sequence of meetups only reinforced my feeling of lack of reality. Somewhere between the interior designer (aka painter decorator) who turned up to date with a cat flap as we talked about my indoor cats. Then there was the McLaren driving guy I nicknamed ‘Mr Fifty Pound Note’ need I say more on that one. I began to grow tired of strange things, messages, and being ghosted. That was a few years ago, and, in the intervening period, I’ve deleted and re-downloaded dating apps every three months or so as my tolerance for weirdness has waxed and waned. And never was I more ready to delete them than after Covid.

I got to reading and agreeing with sex and relationship educator Ms Ruby Rare, author of Sex Ed: A Guide For Adults. “It’s rare that you stumble upon someone completely out of the blue.” She argues that dating without apps is as much about expanding our own interests as it is about meeting others. “I think wanting to meet someone can be quite fraught because there’s a lot of chance involved, so it’s good to focus on what you can control,” she says. “Take a class, join a club, do an activity that will enrich your life, regardless of whom you meet there.”

Expand and Explore

If the right person does present themselves out of the blue, she’s also a big believer in seizing the moment, “as long as you approach without expectation,” she says. “Striking up a conversation isn’t about persuading someone to go out with you, and you’ve really got to be aware of your presence and the impact it can have.

“I think wanting to meet someone can be quite fraught… so it’s good to focus on what you enjoy and place yourself in the right environments.”

Rare likes to approach with a compliment and see if it naturally leads to a conversation. “That way, even if the person isn’t interested, I can congratulate myself on having been brave enough to chat to someone,” she says. “If it does lead to a conversation, be tactful. I’ll say, ‘I’m really enjoying chatting with you. Would it be OK to have your number so we can keep talking? Absolutely no worries if not.'”

Feel confident to build a circle of new friends of both sexes, be honest and approachable.

Many lasting connections come from introductions and shared experiences, build out yours.

The Right Places

If I put myself in the right place, people will start talking at the right time. The right places include members’ clubs, Home House, Shoreditch House, gigs, sports meetups with a social aspect and pubs that aren’t too posh.

The Right Attitude

“Online dating shouldn’t take the place of real-world interactions, and it’s important to engage in offline relationships,”  “We know that social support can be a protective factor against stress. So even if it’s playing sports with [friends] or spending a night, it’s important to take breaks from online dating and engage in real-time social interactions.”

If you feel like you need a digital dating detox, experts say the best way to meet people in real life is simply to get out and do the things you enjoy. The best way to meet people who will enjoy the things you do is to actually do them.

Of course, rarely one finds a future husband or wife on the first outing, and we recommend you come to at least three socials.

Rendezvous

Rendezvous creates an environment where single professional people can meet without all the pressure of online dating. Each party has the vibe of an impromptu celebration. Our regular guests are welcoming, laid back, but lively. Instead of the usual chat-up routines, everyone engages in conversation.

Our small team helps introduce people, mixing up the crowd to create a relaxed environment where you can be yourself.

Louise Robertson

Louise is by day a Fintech marketer; her career has been defined by working for Bayer, Financial Times and Lexisnexis. She currently leads marketing for a US-based embedded insurance scale-up. Alongside her work, she supports Rendezvous with creativity and content. She is a familiar welcoming face at Events.

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Jamming in Jeru – what a party!

Jeru Restaurant | 11 Berkeley St | Mayfair | W1J 8DS

Tuesday 13th September

Our plan with glam new Mayfair restaurant Jeru hatched last week and engaged our group of fun-loving guests. Lou suggested we should give a prize to the best Middle Eastern joke. Well, suffice to say, we canned that idea, deciding it was too hard – but Lou’s effort wasn’t half bad, although I did have to ask if she’d like more cheese with it …haha!

“Why should we hire the chickpeas to be part of our choir?

They could hummus a song!”

Now, something that is definitely not cheesy is Chef Roy Ner’s first London restaurant, Jeru; the favourite newbie for everyone-in-the-know.

Our lucky guests arrived at our private room, The Layla Bar, to find it boldly decorated with stunning art and the bar shining with over 100 glasses of glistening Prosecco, providing the perfect welcome.

Sensational!  And the treats didn’t stop there: we munched through the freshest Middle Eastern sharing plates, including potato fermented wood-fired bread, koji butter and truffle honey. Welsh lamb capocollo, lamb and fennel salami and Angus rump Basturma. White bean hummus, Goats curd, and Aubergine Baba dip – all so Moorish.

Thank you, Liv and Jess from Jeru, for being such welcoming hosts. And one lucky guest won the stunning prize of a dinner for two at Jeru worth £250. I wonder if his wing woman got the invite to dinner!

The room was in very good spirits, with at least 50 new people who were just such fun to have in the room and mixed enthusiastically with our regulars, which, as usual, felt like a group of treasured and fun friends.

Roll on our last event of the year, which will be in November. It has been a pleasure for Lou, Elsa and me to run Rendezvous this year.

Some lovely feedback:

What a fabulous evening!  Thank you so much for organising Tuesday’s event – great choice of venue, a lovely crowd and a delightful evening. It was a really nice mix, and hugely enjoyable.  Oh, and apologies for photo bombing your photo shoot towards the end – exuberant spirits caused by a super party! 


Thank you for organising Tuesday’s very successful party. It’s always great to visit places that we’d never normally go to, and Jeru was a fabulous venue.  Everyone seemed pleased to have the chance to socialise in such a sad week. I had a great time and met some very interesting people, easy to chat with very low music in background and plenty of staff who were very polite and service really quick so no queues for drinks. What’s not to like.  Thank you!


I had a very enjoyable social evening and thought that your venue really worked well. Everyone I spoke with was very engaging….I had pretty much dip out of the dating market as I really didn’t like the online platforms and much prefer meeting people socially which I think takes away lots of pressure to all.


Great to see you on Tuesday. Another successful Rendezvous event.👍🏼


I wanted to say thank you so much for inviting me to the event you hosted at Jeru last night. It was really lovely to meet you and I enjoyed the evening very much. 


Thank you for squeezing me in. It was a fun night and great to get out and mingle. Would love to come to the next one! 


Lovely evening last night lots of nice people old and new.  Good turnout Like the venue Bit different! 


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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Time to Disconnect from Digital Dating

Cosmo Landesman has become a familiar face at our social events and private dinners. It was interesting to read his take on online dating in the Telegraph.

As Cosmo rightly says, many of us have become disillusioned or downright fed up with online dating. Date fatigue is ubiquitous. Another day, another dating friend tells me they have deleted their apps. But we forget how when they first appeared in our lives, they seemed so wonderful and liberating.

But where could he meet that someone who would become his One? The One. What kind of someone did he want to meet? Would they want to meet him? Online dating sites seemed to have all the answers to all his questions and the solutions to his anxieties about finding love.

Cosmo Landesman: ‘Anything has to be better than another night with a stranger who looked nothing like their profile, listening to them bang on about their ex’.

Rather a lovely recommendation

Not long ago, one of my online dates took me to an offline dating group called Rendezvous. Here, I got to have a nice drink in a classy setting and meet lots of people. It made me question my whole online future – why was I spending time and money with ­people who, if I had met them in real life, I would never have asked out for a date? It was time to stop being desperate and become more discriminating. Or maybe it’s time to disconnect from online dating?

Rendezvous creates an environment where single professional people can meet without all the pressure of the online dating scene. Each party has the vibe of an impromptu celebration. Our regular guests are welcoming, laid back, but lively. Instead of the usual chat-up routines, everyone engages in conversation.

Our small team helps introduce people, mixing up the crowd to create a relaxed environment where you can be yourself. You don’t have to act or ­pretend to be someone you’re not the way you feel compelled to on a one-to-one date.

Join us at one of our socials

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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Our Dance at The Dilly

The Dilly Hotel – The Piano Bar | 21 Piccadilly | W1J 0BH

Wednesday 13th July 

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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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The Rosé Experience at 28-50 Party

28:50 Oxford Circus | Market Place | 4 Great Portland Street | W1W 8QJ

Tuesday 24th May

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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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Love Surgery featuring Cosmo Landesman & Rowen Pelling

Wednesday 23th March

28:50 By Night | 76 Jason Court | Wigmore St | London | W1U 2SJ

What an evening it was!  This must have been the best cocktail party and fun therapy session we have ever run. In the decadent basement of 28-50 By Night, we were entertained by former legendary editor of The Erotic Review, Rowen Pelling and former Sunday Times dating columnist Cosmo Landesman. They kicked off the night with frank and funny talk about Love, Dating, Romance – and everything you were afraid to ask…but did anyway!

A Rendezvous event is always something special. But this one exceeded all expectations. Great atmosphere. Great crowd. And Rowan and I had a brilliant time. ” Cosmo Landesman …. available for marriage!

As he says his most memorable moment was when he asked one of the beautiful lady guests if she would like to get married?” and she said, “Yes – but only to you!”

We sipped on glasses of the sparkling Villa Folini, Prosecco. We ate taste-tickling canapes including wild mushroom tarts, artichoke tempura with aioli. Honey roasted fig and serrano ham and rhubarb and custard tarts, prepared by Head Chef Kris Wysocki. 28:50’s team extraordinaire included Riccardo, Helena, Eve, George and Bryan.  And least we forgot the marvellous Jen Atkins Head of Marketing, overseeing the night with energetic enthusiasm!

Jazz After Party

And we stayed late! Guests continued to mingle and enjoy the effortless repertoire of the Stella Angelika Quartet.  As the night got later, there were plenty of people dancing, and quite some moves, and shapes were made! 

The vibe was upbeat and happy. Who would have thought that for so many of the guests, this was their first experience of Rendezvous.  We look forward to welcoming you back to our May drinks party and our July Dancing Party.

Some lovely feedback –

Dear Barbara,

I just wanted to say thank you, Louise and everyone else, for a fun evening at love surgery. Looking forward to the next event!

All the best, M x


Dear Barbara

As always it was lovely to see you on Wed. I found Rowan and Cosmo highly entertaining, I could have listened to them for so much a lot longer!

Best C x


Dear Barbara 

Thank you so much for organising such a wonderful evening last night. I had a great time and had many interesting and fun chats. 

It was so good to meet you and also Lou. You were both so welcoming and friendly which made all the difference. 

Warmest regards F x


Dear Barbara,

It was so nice meeting you yesterday. Your hospitality is amazing, I really enjoyed the evening. Keep me updated about any upcoming events please. 

Kind regards Z 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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March Jazz Dinner at 28-50 By Night

There’s something rather mischievous about stepping down a flight of stairs into a jazz club. With a seductive low-lit room, your eyes are drawn to the well-lit stage, warming up for some on stage action as the evening goes on.

28:50 By Night – is a hybrid breed, part of the successful wine restaurant group, it’s a budding newcomer to the jazz scene.  Setting itself up nicely to lead the charge for being able to provide first class music along with an impeccable food and wine menu.

Our Rendezvous Member’s Jazz dinners are a bit different to our usual stand-up mix and mingle events. We bring together a wonderful group of like-minded people for an enjoyable sit-down dinner and drinks.  With a backdrop of excellent music, our group of men and women (10 of each) enjoyed excellent conversation and a certain amount of sassy fun!


And it sounds like the members enjoyed it too…

“Hi Barbara,

Many thanks for organizing the jazz dinner this week.  I liked the format and had some interesting chats.

I thought the food was terrific and they did a great job ensuring everyone was served.  The jazz was lovely –I couldn’t believe it when I looked at my watch and it was after midnight!

Have a great weekend

A 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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February’s Jazz Dinner – Boisdale

Wednesday 23rd February

Boisdale of Belgravia | 15 Eccleston Street | London | SW1W 9LX 

It felt so convivial and decadent, almost like a speak-easy at our wonderful Boisdale Jazz dinner last week in Belgravia. Boisdale is one of those, you never know what’s going to happen, type of restaurants; you’ve just got to roll with how you are feeling on the night.  Spontaneity puts the fun and spice in our lives.

So, this is how we do it, a bit different to our usual stand-up drink and mingle events. We bring together a wonderful group of like-minded people for an enjoyable sit-down dinner and drinks and a good old fashioned chat, all from the comfort of those things called chairs.

Boisdale’s MD helps us out by mixing up his Single friends with our guests, keeping it lively and entertaining.  I move the group around a few times, without being too pushy, just enough to keep the conversations flowing.

With the charming Boisdale backdrop of excellent live music, our group of men and women, (10 of each), enjoyed excellent conversation with a certain amount of fun cheekiness.

To join the waitlist for our next Jazz dinner – please do email me.  They sell out quickly, but we will do more!


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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