Mum and I recently saw a great play at the Donmar in Covent Garden. It’s called ‘One Night in Miami…‘ and was all about the infamous moment in a small hotel room in Miami when four historic friends hung out. The night was when Cassius Clay (you’ll no doubt know him as Muhammad Ali), won the world heavyweight title and celebrated with his closest friends activist Malcolm X, singer Sam Cooke and football star Jim Brown.

It was really thought provoking and incredibly well written, it’s on until 3rd December so if you get the chance to get tickets take them!

With it being one of those wondrous productions where it’s short enough to have no interval, it means you finish early giving you the rest of the night to enjoy a spot of dinner. One place which has been on my list was Native in Neal’s Yard so we headed over to see their offering.

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The couple behind the restaurant is Ivan & Imogen, Ivan worked previously at River Cottage HQ in Devon where he developed his passion for natural, forged and seasonal British produce. Imogen comes from a rural upbringing, learning from a young age the crafts of foraging, skinning and plucking various game. Native has occasionally been criticised by food critics as trying too hard with the nature and foraging approach in their story but I can safely say that the food was incredible.

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It’s a small setting and very simple decor throughout, little cramped downstairs but see if you can bag a table upstairs watching the chefs work their magic in the open kitchen. As always Mum and I went halves on everything, starting with smoked ham hock croquettes with burnt apple bearnaise and lovage salt. Flavoursome meat in neat little crunchy balls. Next up was the wood pigeon kebab, beetroot hummus, pickled cabbage and harissa. One of their signature dishes, very inventive and slight spicy flavours coming through to compliment the smokey pigeon.

From the larger dishes we had the lovely fresh dorset plaice, burnt cucumber, seaweed mayo, tempura radish. Delicate fish mixed with unusual textures, very nice indeed. Potentially the stand out dish of the evening was the south downs venison, wild mushrooms, hay ash, celeriac, bone marrow – just divine.

Seeing as it was getting a little late by this point on a school night, we decided to pass on the desserts but the options looked lovely.

I would recommend if you can replicating our evening before the play finishes on 3rd December, alternatively Native is worth a trip in itself. Enjoy.

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