Lonely Planet Writer

A special Around the World in 80 Days-themed culinary adventure is coming to London

Fancy taking your taste buds on a literary adventure and diving into the magical world of Jules Verne’s classic novel, Around the World in 80 Days? The good news is, this February, Londoners will be able to do just that, with a special dinner that takes inspiration from the book planned at a secret location.

Cone Canapé's from A Banquet at Toad Hall held earlier this year.
Cone canapé’s from the Banquet at Toad Hall event held earlier this year.

Created by Grub Club, The Literary Hour is a series of private, specially-curated culinary experiences. Past events have included a special Narnia-themed dinner, which saw guests stepping through a wardrobe into a different world, a banquet in Toad Hall inspired by The Wind in the Willows, a Beatrix Potter-themed meal, as well as events inspired the books of Roald Dahl and the unique culinary atmosphere created by Hannibal Lector. The next event is due for February, and will see the company transforming their location into an Around the World in 80 Days-themed venue with a five-course menu that aims to take guests on a unique journey.

The entrance to the Narnia-themed meal that was held earlier this year.
The entrance to the Narnia-themed meal that was held earlier this year. Image by Grub Club/The Literary Hour

The event will see diners beginning their journey in a set inspired by the Reform Club, a favourite location of the book’s protagonist Phileas Fogg, before travelling through the markets of Hong Kong and the backstreets of Bombay, and finally, Japanese eateries. Every course will be introduced with a short reading from the book to set the scene, and the menu includes a special welcome cocktail.

The Literary Hour hosts specially curated dinners inspired by famous books.
The Literary Hour hosts specially curated dinners inspired by famous books. Image by Grub Club/The Literary Hour

“Guests are excited and intrigued by the set design as there’s always somewhere in the world that The Literary Hour creates where you can find something to nibble on. The surprises that are brought out on the night are intended to shock and broaden the horizons of the diners. For example, one of the surprise courses in A Banquet in Toad Hall was ‘mealworms in jelly’. However, all surprises are top secret, so that’s all we can divulge at the moment,” Kimberley Innes, Marketing Executive of Grub Club told Lonely Planet Travel News.

Booking in advance is essential for the experience, with tickets priced £49 (€55). More information on the event is available at the official Grub Club website.