Taking place once a month, on a Tuesday evening, Hedonist brings you a dining experience to remember. They have recently launched a tasting series where they partner with food catering residents Bastard Bistro and a new drinks brand each month. The first event, they partnered with Boatyard Gin for an Irish inspired menu. The second event, which I attended, they partnered with Jack Daniel’s for a Southern American dining experience. It was incredible.
On arrival, we were seated outside to enjoy a welcome drink (Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Apple with lemonade) alongside live music by the talented Nicha. Her setlist and the playlist during the meal was spot on and added a great atmosphere to the full experience. So did the welcoming heatwave as it made it a lot easier to picture us dining in a warm Lynchburg, Tennessee.
Once all the guest has arrived, we were welcomed to take our seats inside, followed by an introduction speech from Jack Daniel’s UK brand ambassador (Cam Dawson) and head bartender (Sam) at Hedonist. With some great JD anecdotes and thoughts behind the cocktails of the night, we were all set with great expectations.
BBQ Smoked Oyster – Pickled JD green apple/Jalapeño Tabasco
I love oysters and with different pickles and other toppings to try. This was really refreshing with the green apple pickles and had a nice kick at the end with the tabasco. A great start to the evening!
Macaroni & Cheese Scotch Egg – Beef Jerky Crumb
I have only once tried a Scotch Egg (yes, I know) and it was one of those you get from a supermarket meal deal so I know I’ve not given them the justice they deserve. This on the other hand, a whole new take on it. Instead of meat the egg was surronded by perfectly cooked Mac n’ Cheese, mixed with a beef jerky crumb. The egg was perfectly cooked with a punchy egg yolk. I love mixing two dishes and combining them into one. If you know, you know.
Three Little Pigs go to the Shmoker – Pork belly burnt end, pig cheek croquettes, sticky pig rib
If you’re a meat lover, this dish is the dream. Three small plates combined to one. I think the pork belly was my favourite but the pig cheek and pig rib went down without any objections. Is there anything better than perfectly BBQes meat on a hot summer’s evening? I do not think so.
Beef Cheek Taco – JD mustard mayo, bacon & shallot jam, slaw
Another favourite of mine, tacos. I love Mexican food and tacos are delicious and all shapes and toppings. Home made tortilla bread where you can taste the corn, filled with melting beef cheek and delicious flavours. Mustard mayo is something I often mix up at home so will definitely add a bit of whiskey to it next time.
Pig Candy Lollipop – JD honey chocolate & orange BBQ sauce
What a weird mix of flavours but oh boy does it work. Melting pork drizzled in honey chocolate and orange BBQ sauce. Sweet meets savoury, a great combination if you ask me. I was happy the orange flavour didn’t come through as much as I don’t like the combination of orange and chocolate.
‘Lynchburgh Lemonade’ – Gentleman’s Jack, Sprite reduction, Limoncello, acids
This is not how we normally see a Lynchburg cocktail being served. Hedonist took their own spin on it and thought it has less lemonade flavour to the original, I really enjoyed this version. A lovely cocktail to sip through. It worked really well with the first course, oysters.
Frat Party Iced Tea – Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Apple, peach and jasmine tea, citrus
Oh my goodness! This is one of the best cocktails I’ve ever had. I was warned before coming to the event that it would be and I was not disappointed. The flavours work so well together and although on paper it sounds sweet, it’s not sickly sweet like many cocktails can be. Wow, I could drink this for days but it would be lethal (drink responsibly!). I was happy that this is the cocktail we got several top up of during the event.
Pig Whiskey Sunday – Pig fat washed Jack Daniel’s, smoked Coke reduction, vanilla ice cream
For the event, classed as a cocktail but I believe it would lend itself well on a dessert menu as well. JD and Coke in a different version I’ve never seen before. Vanilla ice cream topped with a cherry and then each to their own deciding how much whiskey and coke topping to add. I went a bit overboard with the whiskey (difficult to poor, ha).
I love to dine out as it is but events like this elevates the experience and makes eating loads more fun. For only £45/person this is a great dining event where you get a 5-course meal and 3-4 cocktails to accompany it. Prepare to go home slightly tipsy.
Check out Hedonist on Instagram to keep up to date with the next event and get your hands on tickets. They’ll go quickly. I’m definitely going again!!!