‘What happened to classical music?’ It’s a good question, posed at the start of this promising, three-part series tracking the last century of classical composition. Initially, there seems to have been almost a hint of disdain as Strauss, Debussy and Schoenberg heralded a new era. Couldn’t music have just carried on producing pretty melodies and rousing swells of emotion? Well, no. And why should it?
Schoenberg’s is a fascinating story – not only did he offer a truly radical, often uncomfortable artistic vision, but he was also a Jew, living in early twentieth-century Vienna. John Adams describes his music as ‘ugly’, but there can be no doubting its influence. We look forward to more tales of aesthetic brinksmanship as the series continues – BBC4’s pop and rock coverage may be atrophying a touch, but this is TV with real scope and intelligence.
The original Rum Kitchen opened in early 2013 in the island paradise of Westbourne near Portobello Road, and was an immediate hit with the sort of locals who were probably reminded of their last holiday in the Turks and Caicos Islands: Prince Harry and his pal Cressida Bonas were snapped loitering outside. It’s Caribbean for the loafers-and-gilet set, for sure, but it’s a lot of fun, especially the basement bar.And now it’s washed up in Kingly Court just off Carnaby Street, in a much more compact space. Also making the hop from W11 are the carefully distressed driftwood, the don’t-worry-be-happy slogans on the walls, the fancied-up versions of Caribbean classics on the food menu (saltfish fritters, jerk chicken wings, curry mutton, roti) and the all-rum cocktails (we particularly enjoyed the disturbingly named Lesser of Two Weevils, an easy-drinking mix of Red Stripe ginger beer shandy, rum, lime and bitters). If you’re planning on weighing anchor here for a spot of grog, however, take heed: this Rum Kitchen is more ‘kitchen’ than ‘rum’ – the drinking area is small, seating only a few at the bar. Which is a shame – rum + reggae = a surefire way to brighten up a dreary February in Soho.
Venue says: “Join us for one of our jerk chicken burgers and wash it down with a £5 cocktail from our happy hour menu every day from 5-7pm! Rum n' Ting!”