Dining out with friends is definitely a thing that comes with growing up. As we all drift off to university or gap years meeting up one-to-one becomes much more of a challenge once another universe of people and commitments collides into your world. An obvious solution is to arrange group reunions because at least that way you can, in the crudest way of expressing this as possible, kill a great many birds with one stone.
Just before we set off for our second year splattered across the country, a group of Chally girls decided to go out for dinner. So, we went to Revs. Now I know if you are a vague socialite between the age of 16 and 30 your forehead will be wrinkling and your head will be shouting ‘Vodka Revs?? It’s the place where you are first introduced to the sight of drunken boys who pick fights for literally NO reason and girls staggering around in preposterous heels and far too much makeup!’ Well, first of all, we went on a Monday, not on the Wednesday student night. Secondly, this was at the respectable time of 7.30pm, not at 2am when hordes of slurring adolescents start migrating towards Beaconsfield services.
I admit, I was a bit sceptical. My somewhat fuzzy memories of Revs consisted of a sticky floor with bored barstaff and rather tacky decor. However my doubts were partly assuaged by the soft lighting, the homely if a bit garish wallpaper, the lack of blaring music, and the fact that there wasn’t an raging animal queue forming in front of the entrance.
The tricky bit has now come to me describing my food. Today I went on to the online website to find the dish I chose but the menu has changed. So. Um. A lot of people went for the Chicken Katsu Curry which went down well, all was munched up. It seemed fairly similar to the Wagamamas version (which I can only say with hindsight, having had my first W in Leamington this term) but much cheaper (especially because on a Monday it’s 50% off – a student’s fave phrase like ever) so that is really rather snazzy.
I know my meal was ravioli in a spicy tomato sauce. I think it was pumpkin and sage that was in the ravioli. I remember the spiciness of the sauce and the sweetness of the filling that mingled together beautifully. I turn my nose up at the recollection of the dry parts of the ravioli that hadn’t been bathed in the sauce but had been crisped by the grill and so had turned into cardboard peaks. But I do remember that it was good value for money.
I can imagine that the majority of the eaters will be students, most of whom have had at least one bad experience with the old vod. So although it’s quite fun having names like ‘The Dirty Dog’ for a hotdog (ooer), offering ‘The Vodka Burger’ or ‘The Vodka Pizza’ is more likely to make a stomach heave than to make it start clammering for food. After all, when we go to Revs for dinner, we aren’t planning on associating it with memories of ending up plastered in the bathrooms taking endless selfies and sharing lipstick around twenty girls.
Revs can do food and nights out. Possibly combining the two is a step too far. But they’ve delivered on both.