The programme charts its extensive history in both military and search-and-rescue operations. In fact, not since the days of ‘999’ have so many rescue stories been crammed into one show. This, at least, fends off boredom. But a prior interest is probably preferable, or else you might wish to look elsewhere for your television entertainment tonight.
Although Artesian is tucked inside one of central London’s elite hotels, it does its best to maintain a down-to-earth edge. It’s a stunning room – epically tall ceilings, doric columns, blinging chandeliers, you get the picture – but you’ll never feel out of place on the more casual side of smart-casual. That’s probably down to friendly staff (on the smarter side of smart-casual, of course) who chicane around tables with complementary canapés. While there’s people-watching to be done (there are a fair few media darlings propping up the bar), you’ve probably come for the cocktails. And with Alex Kratena – head bartender and a star of the drinks industry – crafting wacky drinks that come with their very own hashtag, there’s certainly the wow factor. Cocktails demonstrate spectacular balance, even when using mad ingredients (‘vodka, shochu, artichoke, coffee, yuzu, passion, coriander’, runs one description). And presentation is taken to showstopping levels… although it probably should be at £18 per glass.
Venue says: “Now taking bookings for lunch with a choice of new dishes from soups, salads and sandwiches to burgers and a selection of lunch cocktails.”